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Russophobia as the new US politically-correct anti-Semitism

It would be wrong to say that Blacks or Jews are “genetically driven to co-opt, penetrate, gain favor” But you can make similar claims about Russians – no problems. Sociopathic Carthago delenda est (Carthage must be destroyed)  is the leitmotiv of US foreign policy toward Russia and is dictated by "Full spectrum Dominance" doctrine: nothing personal only business.  In reality, this is gaslighting the US population for pretty nefarious purposes.

 

Who Rules America > Neoconservatism >
News American Imperialism, Transnational Capitalist Class and Globalization of Capitalism Recommended Links British roots of US Russophobia Full Spectrum Dominance doctrine Cold War II Viper nest of neocons in state department fuels Ukrainegate
NeoMcCartyism NSC -- a sinister organization that controls the President and ensure militarization of the USA foreign policy Demonization of Putin Ukraine-gate as Russiagate 2.0 Perfidious Albion Anti-Russian hysteria in connection with DNC leak and emailgate Anti-Russian hysteria as a method of suppressing of dissent against neoliberalism and militarism
Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism False flag poisonings Skripal poisoning Litvinenko poisoning Russia fight for multipolarity History of American False Flag Operations DNC and Podesta emails leak: blaming Vladimir Putin
Magnitsky case Nulandgate The Rape of Russia Miraculous metamorphosis of Russian crooks on crossing Western border Peak Cheap Energy and Temporary Oil Price Slump Putin-did-it fiasco Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA
USA-Russia Gas War British poisoning false flags MSM Sochi Bashing Rampage Great Plunder of Russia after the dissolution of the USSR Obama: a yet another Neocon Professor Steven Cohen Putin stands up to US and G8 warmongers on Syria
Hillary role in Syria bloodbath Fifth Column of Neoliberal Globalization  Comprador vs. national bourgeoisie Neocolonialism as Financial Imperialism Post-Russiagate remorse -- Russiagate as the second Iraq WDM fiasco Diplomacy by deception Net hamsters
Pussi Riot Provocation Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Khodorkovsky case Boris Berezovsky Internet research agency story as fiasco of Russiagate Russiagate: Special Prosecutor Mueller and his fishing expedition Mueller invokes ghosts of GRU operatives to help his and Brennan case
Neoliberal Brainwashing: Journalism In the Service of the Powerful Few The Guardian Slips Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment America and the Imperial Project Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair Neoliberal Compradors Navalny's Saga Nemtsov assassination
Color revolutions The Rape of Russia, Testimony of Anne Williamson Before the House Banking Committee Russian Color Revolution of 2012 From EuroMaidan to EuroAnschluss The Real War on Reality Who Shot down Malaysian flight MH17? Suppression of Russian language and culture in Ukraine
Most important anti-Russian propaganda campaigns Comprador vs. national bourgeoisie America and the Imperial Project "Fight with Corruption" as a smoke screen for neoliberal penetration into host countries Economics of Peak Energy The Deep State Audacious Oligarchy and "Democracy for Winners"
Russian foreign policy Anatol Leiven on American Messianism Brain Drain American Exceptionalism Russophobic quotes from famous Russian Liberasts Humor Soft propaganda


Introduction

The current US policy of simultaneously antagonizing both China and Russia
 will likely go down as one of the 21st century's more significant strategic miscalculations.
Assuming of course that it is a part of some strategy and not just bumbling incompetence.
Is Russia Being Driven Into the Arms of China

This page is written in hope to help Russian language students to understand the country they are studying despite the level of brainwashing typical for MSM in the West. My own views on the problem were influenced by late Professor  Stephen F. Cohen  whom I really admire and follow.  The US neoliberal elite became unhinged and adopted "Full Spectrum Domination" doctrine after the collapse of the USSR. That did not play well nether for the US national security nor the world, to say nothing about Russia. The real 101 on this topic are two his presentations:

Russophobia is not actually only about Russia. Actually it is more about American exceptionalism and imperialism (and for of all Full spectrum Dominance doctrine). That's why neocons, who are well paid prostitutes of MIC, are such rabid Russophobes. In more way then one it is a modern politically correct version of anti-Semitism practiced by the USA neoliberal elite.

Like anti-Semitism it is a wedge issues, which enhances the level social control of US population and suppression of dissent, which now can be framed as "Russian agents" in best McCarthyism traditions (NeoMcCartyism ).

Amy scapegoating of the particular nations/ethnicity  is very similar, almost identical in sprit to anti-Semitism. In the definition below I just replaced terms in Wikipedia definition of Anti-Semitism:

Russophobia is hostility to, prejudice, or discrimination against Russians. A person who holds such positions is called an Russophobe. Russophobia is generally considered to be a form of racism. It has also been characterized as a political ideology which serves as an organizing principle and unites disparate groups which are opposed to liberalism.

Russophobia may be manifested in many ways, ranging from expressions of hatred of or discrimination against individual Russians...

Here is another  "adapted" definition (from The UK s Labor Party and Its Anti-Semitism Crisis) The definition states:

"Russophobia is a certain perception of Russians, which may be expressed as hatred toward Russians. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of  Russophobia are directed toward Russian or non-Russian individuals and/or their property, toward Russian community institutions and religious facilities."

The uncontroversial "illustrations" of  Russophobia:

Scapegoating is an important part of the neoliberal Propaganda machine, especially war propaganda.  Brainwashing people this way artificially (and temporary) increases social cohesion (as any enemy would) and was evoked as a defensive tool when the neoliberal elite experienced the loss of legitimacy as happened in 2016.  As ROB URIE noted in his Russiagate, Nazis, and the CIA (Jul 31, 2020) CIA was Russophobic organization from the very beginning and it infects the USA political establishment with Russophobia more effectively then COVID-19 infects US population: 

The first Cold War was an imperial business enterprise to keep the Generals, bureaucrats, and war materiel suppliers in power and their bank accounts flush after WWII. Likewise, the American side of the nuclear arms race left former Gestapo and SS officers employed by the CIA to put their paranoid fantasies forward as assessments of Russian military capabilities. Why, of all people, would former Nazi officers be put in charge military intelligence if accurate assessments were the goal? The Nazis hated the Soviets more than the Americans did.

The ideological binaries of Russiagate -- for or against Donald Trump, for or against neoliberal, petrostate Russia, define the boundaries of acceptable discourse to the benefit of deeply nefarious interests. The U.S. has spent a century or more trying to install a U.S.-friendly government in Moscow. Following the dissolution of the USSR in 1991, the U.S. sent neoliberal economists to loot the country as the Clinton administration, and later the Obama administration, placed NATO troops and armaments on the Russian border after a negotiated agreement not to do so . Subsequent claims of realpolitik are cover for a reckless disregard for geopolitical consequences.

...Russiagate is the nationalist party line in the American fight against communism, without the communism. Charges of treason have been lodged every time that military budgets have come under attack since 1945. In 1958 the senior leadership of the Air Force was charging the other branches of the military with treason for doubting its utterly fantastical (and later disproven) estimate of Soviet ICBMs. Treason is good for business.

Shortly after WWII ended, the CIA employed hundreds of former Nazi military officers, including former Gestapo and SS officers responsible for murdering tens and hundreds of thousands of human beings , to run a spy operation known as the Gehlen Organization from Berlin, Germany. Given its central role in assessing the military intentions and capabilities of the Soviet Union, the Gehlen Organization was more likely than not responsible for the CIA's overstatement of Soviet nuclear capabilities in the 1950s used to support the U.S. nuclear weapons program. Former Nazis were also integrated into CIA efforts to install right wing governments around the world.

...To understand the political space that military production came to occupy, from 1948 onward the U.S. military became a well-funded bureaucracy where charges of treason were regularly traded between the branches. Internecine battles for funding and strategic dominance were (and are) regularly fought. The tactic that this bureaucracy -- the 'military industrial complex,' adopted was to exaggerate foreign threats in a contest for bureaucratic dominance. The nuclear arms race was made a self-fulfilling prophecy. As the U.S. produced world-ending weapons non-stop for decades on end, the Soviets responded in kind.

...The dissolution of the USSR in 1991 was met with a promised reduction in U.S. military spending and an end to the Cold War, neither of which ultimately materialized. Following the election of Bill Clinton in 1992, the Cold War entered a new phase. Cold War logic was repurposed to support the oxymoronic 'humanitarian wars' -- liberating people by bombing them. In 1995 'Russian meddling' meant the Clinton administration rigging the election of Boris Yeltsin in the Russian presidential election. Mr. Clinton then unilaterally reneged on the American agreement to keep NATO from Russia's border when former Baltic states were brought under NATO's control .

The Obama administration's 2014 incitement in Ukraine , by way of fostering and supporting the Maidan uprising and the ousting of Ukraine's democratically elected President, Viktor Yanukovych, ties to the U.S. strategy of containing and overthrowing the Soviet (Russian) government that was first codified by the National Security Council (NSC) in 1945. The NSC's directives can be found here and here . The economic and military annexation of Ukraine by the U.S. (NATO didn't exist in 1945) comes under NSC10/2 . The alliance between the CIA and Ukrainian fascists ties to directive NSC20 ....

The recent example of Russophobia in the USA was neo-McCarthyism campaign which was nicknamed "Russiagate", which represents classic gaslighting of the population strategy. A common tactic used to promote the Russiagate narrative was unnamed officials making statements to the press without providing evidence or any factual basis to their claims. Another common tactic was frequent media appearances by former intelligence officials, like James Clapper and John Brennan, usually making wild accusations about Trump and Russia. These tactics are being repeated to promote an anti-China narrative.

The loss of legitimacy of neoliberal elite which  resulted in political fiasco of the establishments candidate -- Hillary Clinton -- is  why McCarthyism was dusted off and launched into mainstream with all major neoliberal MSM promoting it with the level of coordination that might cause some envy of stalwarts of Bolsheviks press.

Overextending this trick has negative consequences as Soviet Politburo discovered in 70th. It's like boy who cried wolf: people just stop trust neoliberal media and  this process already started in 2019 with Rachel MadCow being one  of the first victim: she lost half a million viewers (may be temporary, as she is a talented demagogue, but still).

The current crisis of neoliberalism  and discreditation of neoliberal ideology (2008  and then defeat of Hillary Clinton in 2016 are two stages of the same process) created conditions in which reinventing "Red Scare" again became important, as a tool of controlling US (and in general, Western) population and crushing the dissent.

It is also important to understand that Russophobia in many Western countries and first of all in the USA, is an official policy. Much like in Carthago delenda est (Carthage must be destroyed) was during certain period official policy in Rome.  USA elite inherited it from British elite. In this sense the current US neoliberal empire can be called the Western British Empire (the term which creates several interesting historical analogies, including its possible length of existence  ;-)

American neoliberal elite like the British elite before now badly need an enemy to unite nation as well as a smoke screen that hides their own corruption. Russophobia definitely helps to suppress internal discontent caused by growing inequality, unemployment, shrinking of the middle class and justifies the conversion of the country into National Security State after Islamic threat became less potent.   Another goal is to prevent  the alliance of Germany and Russia -- which  was the goal of British foreign policy for two centuries.

The mass production of faux news demonizing Russians invokes depictions of Orwell's nefarious Eurasians from whom the populace needed Big Brother for protection. Reincarnation of Ministry of Truth by Barack Obama is just another stage of the same process -- now like Soviet Politburo, the US government is afraid that the US people will be informed about the real events in the world.  And that like BBC and Voice of America in the past were used by Soviet population, at least some segments of US population started using RT the same way -- to understand where MSM lie to them.  Like with Voice of America in the past, it is not necessary to buy Russian propaganda to see where neoliberal MSM completely distort the world event and hide important  information. For those purposes RT can serve perfectly well.

Russophobia as Freudian projection of the behaviour of the  US neoliberal elite and the US intelligence services

In a similar vain, in the current international situation, I would also consider Russophobia to be some kind of Freudian projection, a politically correct way of replacing anti-Semitism. Kind of subconscious substitution of Jews to a different, "more acceptable" (aka politically correct)  nationality, with all related consequences and moral repercussions that entail this equivalency. 

There is tragic irony here as Russians in the past were guilty of anti-Semitism (like most European nations).  Now they probably might understand better what it means to be the target of anti-Semitism.  As Arkadiy Rukh observed (cited from dr-piliulkin.livejournal.com ):

"Today, in the era of the total political correctness in the Western world there is only one object for unpunished hatred, for realization of the inevitable phobias and other psychopathologies. This is Russia. Today Russians occupy in the world that niche, which for many centuries was occupied by the Jews: the object instinctive, illogical, animal hatred."

While in many respects Russophobia as a social phenomenon is somewhat similar to anti-Semitism it is also a natural by-product of American Exeptionalism as Russia refuses to accept the role of a complete vassal of the USA, the role that the US elite designated to them after the collapse of the USSR. And the role which was temporary Russia performed under drunk Yeltsin.

In this sense if it a condemnation of the revolt against "inevitable" in the eyes of the US elite world order --  the global neoliberal empire led by the USA.  That also explains the level of bitterness involved. Russophobia became fashionable in Western neoliberal MSM when Russia under Putin became an obstacle on the creation of the global, dominated by the USA neoliberal empire. That resistance to global "neoliberal project" -- neoliberal World Revolution  (although weak and inconsistent -- under Putin Russia became a member of WTO and Medvedev in general is a 'soft" neoliberal, almost a pro-Western comprador) also generates considerable amount of hate. 

Pages of European and American newspapers and their comments columns, are packed with expressions such as

and other similar cliché that clearly remind cliché used by German propaganda against Jews. This anti-Russian hysteria also helps to erase Snowden revelations from Western collective memory as well as WikiLeaks depiction of the USA war crimes.

 The hatred of Russia  as "a new normal" for the USA political elite, as it was for the  British elite in  the past

The hatred of Russia  now is "a new normal" for the US neoliberal establishment and controlled by this establishment MSM.  It actually seves as a pretty good smokescreen for the loss of legitimacy of neoliberal elite. How and for what reasons did this happen? The first thing to understand is that this is not a new phenomenon. British elite were adamantly Russophobic for a long time, several centuries as Btitish empire considers Russia as a threat to British interwsts in India and the region :

The historian J. H. Gleason, in his 1950 book The Genesis of Russophobia in Great Britain, characterized the nineteenth-century English public’s “antipathy toward Russia” as the “most pronounced and enduring element in the national outlook on the world abroad.”

The sentiment, Gleason concluded, was concocted by a manipulative, imperial-minded elite—and was off base, anyway, since Britain’s foreign policy was actually “more provocative than Russia’s” in this period. Others concur. “The world champion imperialists of modern history, the British, were in a permanent state of hysteria about the chimera of Russia advancing over the Himalayas to India,”

While observations of Arkadiy Rukh are, in my opinion, absolutely correct (the article I cited above is pretty interesting too and contains a valuable discussion) I would add a more recent neoliberal edge of this problem (The Vineyard of the Saker):

The historical roots of the Russophobia of the American elites

Having said all of the above, its actually pretty simple to understand why Russia in general, and Putin in particular, elicits such a deep hatred from the Western plutocracy: having convinced themselves that they won the Cold War they are now facing the double disappointment of a rapidly recovering Russia and a Western economic and political decline turning into what seems to be a slow and painful agony.

In their bitterness and spite, Western leaders overlook the fact that Russia has nothing to do with the West's current problems. Quite to the contrary, in fact: the main impact the collapse of the Soviet Union on the US-run international economic system was to prolong its existence by creating a new demand for US dollars in Eastern Europe and Russia (some economists - such as Nikolai Starikov - estimate that the collapse of the USSR gave an extra 10+ years of life to the US dollar).

In the past, Russia has been the historical arch-enemy of the British Empire. As for Jews - they have always harbored many grievances towards pre-revolutionary Tsarist Russia. The Revolution of 1917 brought a great deal of hope for many East-European Jews, but it was short lived as Stalin defeated Trotsky and the Communist Party was purged from many of its Jewish members. Over and over again Russia has played a tragic role in the history of the Ashkenazi Jews and this, of course, has left a deep mark on the worldview of the Neocons who are all deeply Russophobic, even today. Somebody might object that many Jews are deeply grateful for the Soviet Army's liberation of Jews from the Nazi concentration camps or for the fact that the Soviet Union was the first country to recognize Israel. But in both cases, the country which is credited with these actions is the Soviet Union and not Russia which most Ashkenazi Jews still typically associate anti-Jewish policies and values.

It is thus not surprising that both the Anglo and the Jewish elites in the US would harbor an almost instinctive dislike for, and fear of, Russia, especially one perceived as resurgent or anti-American. And the fact is that they are not wrong in this perception: Russia is most definitely resurgent, and the vast majority of the Russian public opinion is vehemently anti-American, at least if by "America" we refer to the civilizational model or economic system.

... ... ...

Considering the never ending barrage of anti-Russian propaganda in the western corporate media one could wonder how strong anti-Russian feelings are in the West. This is really hard to measure objectively, but as somebody born in Western Europe and who has lived a total of 15 years in the USA I would say that anti-Russian sentiment in the West is very rare, almost non-existent. In the USA there have always been strong anti-Communist feelings - there still are today - but somehow most Americans do make the difference between a political ideology that they don't really understand, but that they dislike anyway, and the people which in the past used to be associated with it.

US *politicians*, of course, mostly hate Russia, but most Americans seem to harbor very little bad feelings or apprehension about Russia or the Russian people. I explain that by a combination of factors.

First, since more and more people in the West realize that they are not living in a democracy, but in a plutocracy of the 1%, they tend to take the official propaganda line with more than a grain of salt (which, by the way, is exactly what was happening to most Soviet people in the 1980s). Furthermore, more and more people in the West who oppose the plutocratic imperial order which impoverishes and disenfranchises them into corporate serfs are quite sympathetic to Russia and Putin for "standing up to the bastards in Washington". But even more fundamentally, there is the fact that in a bizarre twist of history Russia today stands for the values of the West of yesterday: international law, pluralism, freedom of speech, social rights, anti-imperialism, opposition to intervention inside sovereign states, rejection of wars as a means to settle disputes, etc.

In the case of the war in Syria, Russia's absolutely consistent stance in defense of international law has impressed many people in the USA and Europe and one can hear more and more praise for Putin from people who in the past has deep suspicions about him.

Russia, of course, is hardly a utopia or some kind of perfect society, far from it, but it has taken the fundamental decision to become a *normal* country, as opposed to being a global empire, and any normal country will agree to uphold the principles of the "West of yesterday", not only Russia. In fact, Russia is very un-exceptional in its pragmatic realization that to uphold these principles is not a matter of naive idealism, but a sound realistic policy goal. People in the West are told by their rulers and the corporate media that Putin in an evil ex-KGB dictator who is a danger for the US and its allies, but as soon as these people actually read or listen to what Putin actually says they find themselves in a great deal of agreement with him.

In another funny twist of history, while the Soviet population used to turn to the BBC, Voice of America or Radio Liberty for news and information, more and more people in the West are turning to Russia Today, Press TV, or Telesur to get their information. Hence the panicked reaction of Walter Isaacson, Chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, the US outfit overseeing US media directed at foreign audiences, who declared that "we can't allow ourselves to be out-communicated by our enemies. You've got Russia Today, Iran's Press TV, Venezuela's TeleSUR, and of course, China is launching an international broadcasting 24-hour news channel with correspondents around the world". Folks like Isaacson know that they are slowly but surely loosing the informational battle for the control of the minds of the general public.

And now, with the entire Snowden affair, Russia is becoming the safe harbor for those political activists who are fleeing Uncle Sam's wrath. A quick search on the Internet will show you that more and more people are referring to Putin as the "leader of the Free World" while other are collecting signatures to have Obama give his Nobel Prize to Putin. Truly, for those like myself who have actually fought against the Soviet system it is absolutely amazing to see the 180 degree turn the world has taken since the 1980s.

Western elites - still stuck in the Cold War

If the world has radically changed in the last 20 years, the Western elites did not. Faced with a very frustrating reality they are desperately trying to re-fight the Cold War with the hope of re-winning it again. Hence the never ending cycle of Russia-bashing campaigns I mentioned at the beginning of this post. They try to re-brand Russia as the new Soviet Union, with oppressed minorities, jailed or murdered dissidents, little or no freedom of speech, a monolithic state controlled media and an all seeing security apparatus overseeing it all. The problem, of course, is that they are 20 years late and that these accusations don't stick very well with the western public opinion and get exactly *zero* traction inside Russia. In fact, every attempt at interfering inside Russian political affairs has been so inept and clumsy that it backfired every single time. From the absolutely futile attempts of the West to organize a color-coded revolution in the streets of Moscow to the totally counter-productive attempts to create some kind of crisis around homosexual human rights in Russia - every step taken by the western propaganda machine has only strengthened Vladimir Putin and his the "Eurasian Sovereignists" at the expense of the "Atlantic Integrationist" faction inside the Kremlin.

There was a deep and poignant symbolism in the latest meeting of the 21 APEC countries in Bali. Obama had to cancel his trip because of the US budget crisis while Putin was treated to a musically horrible but politically deeply significant rendition of "Happy birthday to you!" by a spontaneous choir composed of the leaders of the Pacific Rim countries. I can just imagine the rage of the White House when they saw "their" Pacific allies serenading Putin for his birthday!

... ... ...

On one side we have the 1%, the Anglo imperialists and the Ziocons, while on the other we have the rest of the planet, including potentially 99% of the American people. If it is true that at this moment in time Putin and his Eurasian Sovereignists are the most powerful and best organized faction of the worldwide resistance to the Empire, they are far from being central, or even less so, crucial, to it. Yes, Russia can, and will, play its role, but only as a normal country amongst many other normal countries, some small and economically weak like Ecuador, other huge and powerful like China. But even small Ecuador was "big enough" to grand refuge to Julian Assange while China seems to have asked Snowden to please leave. So Ecuador is not that small after all?

It would be naive to hope that this "de-imperialization" process of the USA could happen without violence. The French and British Empires collapsed against the bloody backdrop of WWII, while did the Nazi and Japanese Empires were crushed under a carpet of bombs. The Soviet Empire collapsed with comparatively less victims, and most of the violence which did take place during that process happened on the Soviet periphery. In Russia itself, the number of death of the mini civil war of 1993 was counted in the thousands and not in the millions. And by God's great mercy, not a single nuclear weapon was detonated anywhere.

So what will likely happen when the US-Ziocon Empire finally collapses under its own weight? Nobody can tell for sure, but we can at least hope that just as no major force appeared to rescue the Soviet Empire in 1991-1993, no major force will attempt to save the US Empire either. As David Rovic's puts it so well, the big weakness of the 1% which rule the US-Ziocon Empire is that "they are a tiny minority and we are everywhere".

In the past 20 years the US and Russia have followed diametrically opposed courses and their roles appears to have been reversed. That "pas de deux" is coming to some kind of end now. Objective circumstances have now again placed these two countries in opposition to each other, but this is solely due to the nature of the regime in Washington DC. Russian leaders could repeat the words of the English rapper Lowkey and declare "I'm not anti-America, America is anti-me!" and they could potentially be joined by 99% of Americans who, whether they already realize it or not, are also the victims of the US-Ziocon Empire.

In the meantime, the barrage of anti-Russian propaganda campaigns will continue unabated simply because this seems to have become a form of psychotherapy for a panicked and clueless western plutocracy. And just as in all the previous cases, this propaganda campaign will have no effect at all.

It is my hope that next time we hear about whatever comes next after the current "Greenpeace" campaign you will keep all this in mind.

The Saker

The USA and Russian should be strategic partners

During the "cold War" the "old" US elite behaved more or less reasonably and tried to avoid unnecessary confrontation. Several moments were clear exception (Korea War, Cuban crisis, Vietnam war and support of radical political Islam in Afghanistan), but all-in-all it was kind of policy of "peaceful coexistence" (live and give other chance to live), not of an outright "all out" confrontation.

Intelligence agencies behaves more provocatively, especially CIA in Europe, which organized and trained Nazi collaborators for the resistance to the possible Soviet invasion, and subsequent guerilla movement against Soviet occupation.  Also in case of JFK assassination, the patsy was chosen by the CIA in a way that makes it easy to implicate Russia. But those were exception, rather then the rule.  Probably the memory of the WWII and the level of cooperation of two countries in this war as allies still played some role in such restrain.

But eventually a new generation of US elite, the elite did not have WWII experience come to power.  This  new US elite tried hard to colonize Russia instead of making it a valuable partner after dissolution of the USSR. Bill Clinton and Larry Summers are two good example of this behaviour.

This adventurism backfired.  This was probably the first blunder, the blunder make by Clinton administration -- the first administration with a lot of neocons onboard (we all remember unforgettable female neocon Madeleine Albright).  they failed to utilize pro-USA fe4elings of the Russian population after the dissolution of the USA. Should the USA adopt the Marshall plan for Russia those feelings would be preserved. But the Clinton administration decided to loot  Russia and concert it into a vassal state. That was a strategic mistake, although looting succeeded on a really grand stale (several trillions were stolen) with the help of Harvard mafia and Russian compradors.  The instituted shock therapy for  the Russian economics which plunged it into depression which was worse thatn the one which was coursed by the Germany aggression in WWII.  Many important enterprises went bankrupts, other were bought by foreign investors for pennies on the dollar (Browder was one notable example of this "looting gang" that descended on Russia at the time; Berezovsky, Khodorkovsky and other Jewish oligarchs were another important players in this looting)

Subsequent administration also demonstrated strong neocon influence (actually neocons, such as Paul Wolfowitz dominated Bush II administration foreign policy)  and due to it made several strategic blunders such as invasions in Iraq, Afghanistan  and Libya.  And that despite the fact the Russia provided great help in Afghan operation, as it essentially controlled (and armed) the North Alliance against Taliban. 

Obama administration essentially continued Bush II foreign policy without major changes. The only change was that is did was more double-dealing. It did get Russia into a trap, when Medvedev government abstained in UN Security council votes for Libyan resolution (which was a disguised justification of NATO military intervention), which opened the way to the occupation of Libya and killing of colonel Kaddafi ("We came, we saw, he died").  Obama administration also masterfully played Iran card against Russia, crashing oil prices three times (from $120 to $30) from the second half of 2014 to January 2016 and keeping oil prices below $50 per barrel (on average) all 2016 (Russia needs approximately $50-$55 just to balance the state budget).

It also outplayed Russia in Ukraine tuning this county into nationalistic enclave extremely hostile to Russia (see "Fuck the EU": neocons show EU its real place ). And then to add insult to injury introduced sanctions against Russia. Obama might be not a great president, but he for sure is one of the greatest hypocrites in world history.

But those attacks as well as a clear attempt to encircle Russia in Europe backfired: if you pursue containment of China and at the same time introduce sanctions against Russia it is only natural that these countries will become closer political partners. From the point of view of traditional American and any other political logic, actions that contribute to the rapprochement between Moscow and Beijing, are, to put it mildly, unwise.  And that what Obama administration archived. This is the main legacy of Obama administration in foreign policy, which was dutifully continued by Trump administration (actually the USA foreign policy does not depend of who is in power as the President and who is the Secretary of State; it is controlled by the Deep State -- forces outside elected executive branch and which consist of MIC, intelligence agencies and the Wall Street (financial oligarchy) as well as created by then think tanks such and Council on Foreign Relations (CFR)). 

Russian elite for too long was trying to please the Western colleagues. They swallowed completely unacceptable things. Gorbachov is generally considered in Russia as a traitor of the nation. They resigned to NATO expansion. Even after the bombing of Yugoslavia, which was  a clear violation of international law, they still viewed the USA a friendly nation and hoped for the best. Another problem was that Russia was too weak at the moment, kind of semi-colony of the USA (and Yeltsin regime was clearly a comprador regime, no question about it). 

But at this point attitude to the USA start changing to negative.  After Ukrainian coup d'état of February 2014 (Maydan Revolution, as it is called in the West) this change only accelerated and "Athlantists" group enough Russian neoliberal elite lost a lot of influence and became politically ostracized. . In other words huge amount of political goodwill that existed in Russia after dissolution of the USSR was completely squandered in less then 30 years.   That's an amazing art of making enemies from friends.

But at the end of Obama administration Russia just stopped to trust the USA. At all. They view Obama as treacherous and extremely dangerous imperialist, who will not stop at anything by promoting the US domination.  That means that they now view the USA as a geopolitical gangster, which is violating any laws in impunity using classic "might makes right" principle. That's a dangerous view and dangerous situation for the USA.  This is another geopolitical blunder of the US elite.  This view only became stronger under Trump administration.

I never was a Russian citizen, but I was and still am interested in Russian politics and, especially, culture. I think that it is a European culture in its essence. Very interesting and very rich. Which was able to survive years of Soviet rule. So attempt of isolate Russia from Europe attempted by Obama neocons (see Nulandgate), following classic "device and conquer" strategy of British Empire, might be a geopolitical mistake despite short term dividends  this  action brought to the USA geopolitical position in the region.  It also increase the  changes of WWIII, which definitely would mean end of the USA as the global empire  and probably as a country (the same is true for Russia -- both countries will be completely devastated)

Neocons as the owners of the USA foreign policy. Full Spectrum Dominance mantra

Neocons defined Russia as the main threat. In other words deterrence of Moscow became the strategic goal of the USA foreign policy, which is essentially a neocon foreign policy, the policy of obtaining and maintaining the world domination at all costs. 

That means that the efforts to explicitly shape the USA public opinion to see Russia as the key geopolitical enemy are dictated by priorities of the USA foreign policy, which is defined by neocons.

This "Anaconda strategy" of encircling Russia got a significant boost after the victory of far right in EuroMaidan. This event has become for a great geopolitical victory for the USA and humbling defeat for Russia. Russia was in bad shape to prevent it, as the logic of development of new state immanently produces anti-Russian sentiments as the mean to create their own identity. But still weakness of Russia in Ukraine was real and signify a serious problems ahead. Also the USA is way to strong to go into open confontation with the US neocons, which dominates the US foreign policy.

The reaction of Russia on far right victory at EuroMaydan gave rise in in the US establishment, to even more active implementation of the strategy of confrontation, and propaganda campaign against "the Russian threat".  Like Bolsheviks before them (and neocons are just turncoat Trotskyites, so there are a lot of common between two), they hate any obstacle on the path to creation of global neoliberal empire led by the USA. This strategy involves increasing the military presence on the European continent and military power of NATO. Much tougher stance toward Russian projects in Western and Eastern Europe and in attacks on the level of international organizations. Along with the anti-Russian operations in Europe, the US and its satellites are active in the countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus. A good example is the recent attempt to organize a Maidan in Armenia.

The role of skepticism toward neocon propaganda

My negative attitude to distortions and clearly orchestrated by White house  anti-Russian campaign in the USA press reflects my natural skepticism. I am not content with typical coverage of Russia in the USA press which reminds me the caricature on the USA coverage by Soviet press (which at the time had higher standard of living the people of the USSR and low level of unemployment).  I consider hysteric Russophobia that is now practiced  to be simplistic and counterproductive policy which serves to promote equally shortsighted global imperial policy that benefits only the US financial oligarchy. Policy that has considerable cold-war inertia and that is damaging to the USA long term interests. Most journalists are simply behave like paid attack dogs (a good example here is Mr. Wallace: his interview of Putin was an insult to the American people; Wallace actually tried to lecture Vladimir Putin).

Here I collected some of the authors who try to see more long term approach and try to present their own understanding of the complex problems related to previous US attempt to colonize Russia after the dissolution of the USSR.  Or at least advice a more realistic US foreign policy toward Russia. Of course it is nice to squash the old geo-political enemy like a bug and I would be the first to admit that under Yeltsin West came close to this scenario. Criminal privatization of Russian companies was hugely successful attempt to put an end to the Russia as an independent country. Similar strategy was by-and-large successful in other USSR republics like Ukraine, Georgia and especially Baltic countries creating what can be called New Latin America.

But after Putin came to power, the attempts to convert Russia into yet another Latin American country became gradually reversed (although this process is some areas went too far and to reverse it completely is very difficult). As Ira Straus aptly put it in her letter Russia, U.S. Media:

Nowadays attacking Russia has a politically correct tinge to it, since Russia is a white Christian country. By contrast, attacking China still suffers from being susceptible to counter-charges of racism and anti-Communism. Perhaps this is the source of the strange double standard in which Russia is attacked just about any day for just about anything while China is virtually ignored day after day, month after month for the same and far worse.

Attacking Russia is especially "correct" when it is a matter attacking a Republican Administration for being soft on a Russia that is beating up on Muslims. One doubts that much of the American public shares the media's sensibilities on this. Picture bubba listening as Dan Rather launches into Russia for beating up on Muslim Chechens; he'll probably be telling himself, "there the liberal media go again, standing up for our enemies and blaming our allies the Russians for fighting back". Among Americans who write about politics, only Pat Buchanan and Ann Coulter dare to say such things, but many more think it, in whole or in part.

The importance of adversarial culture for the media can be seen from the Bush I administration, which truly was anti-Russian. The media bashed Bush I for this; it became ambivalent on Russia, taking on a more pro-Russian hue than any time before or since. As soon as Clinton got a pro-Russian reputation, the media switched back to Russia-bashing mode. It was Clinton-bashing that was the real point.

In other words, the media should not be taken as a barometer of U.S. government policies on Russia. It is more often an indicator of the opposite.

What does it matter? A lot. The media drumbeat against Russia has an enormous impact on public policy, not only in the US but in every Western country, and in Russia itself. It makes it hard to think clearly, or even to see clearly. It fosters and fans conflict. It promotes a tit for every tat.

First, the effects on Russians. The media play an enormous role in convincing them that we're an enemy. They can see CNN, BBC and other Western media daily, at length; they hear from our government only rarely, and practically never from the American people. They can see the Western media's implicit premises far more clearly than the media themselves do. Mistakenly assuming these premises to represent Western policy, they draw what would be the logical conclusion: that we are their enemy. If Russia does in turn become an enemy again, the media will have been a major cause of it.

Second, effects on Western policy-making are just as damaging. Instead of helping the Western governments do their thinking, the media block out most of the space for it. They make it harder for the West to think out loud about such matters as how to build active alliance relations with Russia, or how to overcome the remaining Cold War standoffs. They make it harder to follow a steady course where cooperation has been agreed, They have done much to cause the West to be an unreliable partner for Russia, an unreliability that democrats in Russia noted with profound regret throughout the 1990s. They prioritize conflicting interests over shared interests, encouraging every minor divergence of interest to grow into a major opposition. Their audience ratings flourish on conflict; and no longer fearing it as risking war or nuclear incineration, they promote it shamelessly.

If we end up with a new Cold War -- and the risk is becoming a real one -- it won't be a small thing. It would mean a nuclear superpower once again ranged against us and the world plunged back into a bipolar disorder, only in more unstable conditions. In that case, the media will no doubt turn around and denounce as "reckless" those who carry out their painful duties in the conflict. The truly reckless ones, however, will have been those in this era who so freely did so much to bring it on.

My personal views are close to views expressed by Anatoly Karlin in About Da Russophile

As regards Russian politics, I make no secret that I’m a pro-Putin conservative. That said, my views are moderate – while Western media coverage of Russia may be woefully biased and frequently malicious, there are certainly plenty of things to criticize about Russia and Russians.

However, they must be grounded in in statistics, an appreciation of the viewpoints of ordinary Russians, and a judicious comparative perspective (which is NOT equivalent to "moral relativism" or "whataboutism" as many of the more hardcore Russophobe propagandists claim).

I think that the Western MSM fails on all three counts:

This blog concerns with calling them out on their lies. As the one-time Guardian chief editor C.P. Scott once said, "Comment is free but facts are sacred." While his newspaper has retreated from this vision in practice, I maintain that it’s the most elegant encapsulation of what real journalism (and punditry, blogging, etc) should all be about.

...I consider Charles de Gaulle to have done a great job, and consider Putin to be a comparable figure in vision and stature.

Russians are coming: War hysteria as classic Adorno

Outside obvious "Lebensraum" motives, it looks like western hate towards Russia rests on some deep inadequacy syndrome. Russia is supposed to be some has-been power that is now of no consequence, yet it gets way more attention than such a worthless state would merit. The amount of negative coverage since Sochi Olympics is bordering on war hysteria. That's dangerous pass as ideas became material things when they penetrate deep into conscience of nation. Hate eventually tends to materialize.

The amount of negative coverage since Sochi Olympics is bordering on war hysteria. That's dangerous pass as ideas became material things when they penetrate deep into conscience of nation. Hate eventually tends to materialize.

Russophobia as persistent policy of the US government and US media. And all this talk about Russia aggressiveness, and carefully orchestrated related war hysteria in MSM is pure projection. It is the USA which is the most aggressive international player on the world stage.

Russophobia is the unofficial but persistent set of behavioral patterns of the US government and US media. It is clear that US tried to weaken and possibly dismember Russia out of geopolitical considerations which represents a real threat to the US world hegemony. This idea on which the US elite is hell bent since end of WWII and there were even plans to bomb Russia just after end of WWII.

It is the only military power that can annihilate large part of the continental USA, But there is something deeper here. It is also an attempt to unify nation, which under neoliberalism became much less coherent whole and in which 99% of the population hates the top 1% and the level of this hate is increasing, especially in minorities and inner cities.

Russophobia is a crucial part of the US foreign policy. In this respect the US foreign policy is so messianic that it reminds me Soviet foreign policy (with the substitution of "triumph of democracy" for "triumph of communism") and I wonder if the USSR really was a defeated party in the Cold War. This mentality of "export of revolution" is the integral part of mentality of the US elite. The difference with Trotskyism, if exists, is minor, and the key difference between Trotskyism and the US flavor of messianism probably is connected with the smell of oil which radically increases the urge to democratize a particular country. In any case attempt to export democracy in Russia never stopped since 1991 and under Yeltsin were so successful that the country lost more in industrial production then during the second World War and poverty became a norm for more then 50% of the population.

Carthago delenda est (Carthage must be destroyed) attitude exists partially because the Western elites hate resource nationalists independently whether those nationalists are leftist or conservative. Fighting resource nationalists tooth-and-nail is an important, may be even critical part of neoliberal doctrine. The latter is a civic religion in the USA. That means the Russophobia in the USA has strong religious component, and is supported by 500 pound gorilla of the US elite propaganda machine. In other words there is a strong, consistent tendency of demonization of Russia (Paul Starobin, The National Interest Blog, August 28, 2014):

In any case, our taste for a country—favorable or unfavorable—shouldn’t dictate our foreign policy, which is properly shaped by a cool calculation of our national interest. On these terms, America is right to resist Russia if Putin seems truly bent on bullying his way to a redrawn map of Europe, but also right to try to keep working with Russia on matters of mutual concern such as Islamic militancy. And that same calculation will hold when Putin, as must happen eventually, exits the Kremlin, willingly or unwillingly, whether replaced by a new autocrat or a more democratic figure. Today’s heightened tension between the United States and Russia, conceivably the first chapter of a new cold war, with Europe as ambivalent as ever about its role, underscores that Russia is likely to remain one of America’s most vexing and formidable diplomatic challenges for a long time to come.

So the future of the presentation of Russia as a hodgepodge of unflattering stereotypes seems bright. The naive liberal notion that the world has a teleological disposition toward a progressive end—if only holdouts like Russia would get with the program—is deeply entrenched. Headlines datelined in Russia—on corrupt oligarchs, or on control-freak KGB-generation political operators—will continue to nourish sweeping criticism of Russians, from their leaders on down, as primitive and psychologically ill. Probably no other nation is so easy (or so safe) to caricature.

And the “Russia Is Doomed” syndrome is bound to survive because Russia, alas, still matters. The object of such concentrated anxiety over the centuries, far from heading down a path to obscurity, remains a global force and impossible to ignore. So the worries will live on, too, as will the sublimated wish to efface Russia. But perhaps the good news for the critics is precisely that Russia is not about to go away. They will have plenty of grist for their mill for decades to come.

The issue is whether comprador elites subservient to the US are in power, or more nationalistic "national sovereignty" guys. It is true that a nationalist elite can be as predatory as a comprador elite, but a reasonable degree of national sovereignty is a prerequisite for social justice and it is difficult to raise standard of living if your resources are owned by transnationals. The latter automatically became above the law and do what they want with impunity.

Russophobic views on Russia "There is no life there !"

The Russophobic views on Russia can be summed up in three words: "There is no life there !" This simple formula invoke the whole complex system of "corrupt journalism patterns" and powerful propaganda mechanisms polished during 45 years of Cold War. Those journalistic patterns causes most western journalists (not without help of their political handlers as independent journalism in the USA is a joke) treat Russia as a failed state. Not simply a country that temporary dropped out of the world civilization, but the country is doomed to such a drop by the several immanent features such as "national character", climate, landmass, religion, history, etc.

From Dr. MacFaul quotes above it is clear that in the American media and among American politicians Russia occupies a marginal position. After the Soviet Union is gone, they mostly cares about getting assets on pennies per dollar (behaviour of criminals like Mr. Browder, whom McFaul loves so much, exemplifies such an attitude) and to lesser extent about Russia military capabilities, which are still a risk. Although I doubt that.

From the typical US behavior it looks like American politicians are not really interested in any other aspect of Russian situation, other then energy resources (Khodorkovsky is a new saint in the USA, probably for his failed attempt to sell Russia oil resources to US companies). And he is new puppet in the show of finding the possibilities of regime change and installing a puppet regime as they unsuccessfully tried in 2011-2012. They still miss Yeltsin drunk regime and Gaidar-Chubais neoliberal gang, which almost converted Russia into kleptocracy from which Putin tried gradually to extract it with great and not always successful efforts.

It all comes down to a set of cliché: Russia is corrupt (while in reality this is a immanent feature of all neoliberal regimes and first of all the USA, the most corrupt neoliberal regime in existence) , does not respect human rights (unlike Saudis) and does not play by the rules (unlike Libya rebels), is not democratic (unlike Qatar). Russia seems to them so weak and uninteresting, not worthy of a real partnership dialogue. And is arrogant enough not to agree with the status of vassal so she needs to be taken care of:

"To promote liberty requires first the containment and then the elimination of those forces opposed to liberty, be they individuals, movements, or regimes. " - M. McFaul, The Liberty Doctrine: Reclaiming the purpose of American power. Policy Review April & May 2002 The Liberty Doctrine Hoover Institution

Such an ungrateful jerks, who jailed Dick Cheney best friend Khodorkovsky, squeezed this perfectly honest guy, exemplary "the largest portfolio investor in Russia, British citizen William Browder" (Who, BTW, was the USA citizen until recently, but suddenly changed his mind) and so on and so forth. They should be "regime changed". It is like the relationship between schoolchildren, when a bully see a threat on the school yard and acts preemptively.

Very well orchestrated Russophobia campaign of Western MSM

The first thing that surprise me is a very well "coordinated" level of Russophobia demonstrated by Western MSM. The degree of Russophobia in Western press varies very little be it Guardian, or NYT, or BBC or WashPost. As financial oligarchy controls the MSM you can't expect anything different. They act as a pack of dogs. Typical level is treating Russian as forever damned barbarians. Slightly more advanced is treating Russia a legitimate playground for testing the controversial socio-economic doctrines like shock therapy and a land were any foreign crook is entitled to get rich fast (like Browder did ). But the essence is the same, no right for "national sovereignty", no right for any "special way". Those concepts are simply outside a typical Western press journalists "template" that their editors enforce.

As John Drury noted in his comment to U.S. Russia Withheld Intel on Boston Bomb Suspect - WSJ.com

Ridiculous comments populate the blogs, the op eds and the comment sections of most sites. But what unsettles me more is the rabid Russian phobia (call it "Russophobia") which populates the American press (liberal/conservative).

We never see things from the Russian side. It is always Putin who is up to no good, Vladimir, the monster, the balding fool with no shirt flexing his muscles. This is not the Cold War, yet we have not shed our Cold War biases.

See Propaganda and The Guardian Slips Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment for more information

Two types of Russophobes: "Russophobes by conviction" vs. "Russophobes for money"

Russophobia is a form of racism and studies of other forms of racism such as anti-Semitism are applicable here.

It is a prejudice against, hatred of, or discrimination against Russian people as an ethnic, religious, or racial group. In Baltic states it is close to regime of Apartheid. In Ukraine it has a form of suppression of Russian language and culture

Russophobes by conviction

I have an impression on the personal level sincere and acute Russophobia (not to be mixed with Russophobia as a official line ) can be a compensation mechanism (classic Adorno). I am not talking here about ideological prostitution typical for MSM journalists. But on individual level it looks like projection not that different from other national bigotry and the undisputable and provable fact is that the USA and, especially, Great Britain MSM serves as an "Incubator of hatred" toward Russia. Of course this also tells something very important about the US/GB governments.

I suspect that those who adopt Russophobia position not for money (let's call them "sincere Russophobes") have a personality of sectants/fanatics in a very deep sense of this word. Or like Eric Hoffer called them "True Believers" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_True_Believer).

For though ours is a godless age, it is the very opposite of irreligious. The true believer is everywhere on the march, and both by converting and antagonizing he is shaping the world in his own image. And whether we are to line up with him or against him, it is well that we should know all we can concerning his nature and potentialities.

In a way sincere Russophobe's are almost extinct minority (but still can be found among Ukrainian nationalists ;-).

Russophobes for money

There a legion of "Russophobes for money". People who are profiting personally from Russophobia nonsense they spew. This is common among all those people who are far from the sharpest tools form the box. As a result they try to occupy a niche that is still available and earn living in such a disgusting way. At best they are average with very few exceptions (Belkovski might be one exception). In a way we can view it as a survival tactic of people with mediocre talent in conditions of high competition. Similar displacement into obscure niches can be observed for mediocre people in other professions.

This "Russophobia for money" is common among all those people who are far from the sharpest tools form the box. As a result they try to occupy a niche that is still available and earn living in such a disgusting way.

"Russophobia for money" is common among all those people who are far from the sharpest tools form the box. As a result they try to occupy a niche that is still available and earn living in such a disgusting way.

Cold War II as an attempt to slow down the pace of Russia modernization and preserve it as an "oil drum" for the West

Cold War II is rooted not in Ukrainian event (The EuroMaydan coup d'état was organized by the USA and Western powers; Crimea was only a pretext) but is closely connected with the neocon attempts to slow down the pace of Russia modernization and secure Russia status as resource vassal of the USA. Here is a part of discussion from Kremlin Stooge that touch this theme in relation to Skolkovo techno-park.

kievite:
April 13, 2011 at 6:15 pm

This is a very apt comment and I wish that your observation comes true. But the problem is that as you :

"The forces arrayed against Russia are sufficiently formidable and sufficiently unrelenting "

First of all the West is rich enough to finance substantial fifth column, especially fifth column media (official $70 millions for support of NGO and "alternative" press is just a tip of iceberg). That’s the essence of neo-colonialism do nothing new here. Also a large part of elite is already linked to the West and is not interested in any confrontation. Nothing new here too.

So the discussion about what level of state capitalism is beneficial (or where Medvedev should stop with his "second liberalization") is complex and far from purely technical one. External forces should be taken into account and once in a while liberalization companies to placate the West are not completely bad idea no matter how you view neoliberalism: state capitalism requires periodic "purges" (Stalin well understood that) and "liberalization" and, especially "fight with corruption" provides perfect pretext for purges. If one looks at some Medvedev’s actions from this angle and you might well come to conclusion that it might be not complete sell-off but a more complex game.

In situation when you need to purge excesses of state capitalism West can serve as a natural ally and in such situation slogan of cat Leopold "Rebyata davayte zhit’ druzhno" (Let’s be friends) suddenly became politically viable at least among the pro-Western part of the elite. And the idea of periodic moving the pendulum from "higher statism" to "higher private enterprise support" in order to avoid stagnation, say, each seven-ten year period is not completely absurd. The main question is whether the process runs out of control or not.

Another possible contention point is that sooner of later oil flow will start diminishing and with it revenues will also start dropping. Currently there are too few industries that can replace the flow the oil dollars. Attempt to revitalize some of the existing heavy industries under the flag of liberalization, if done clever is not a bad idea.

And as much as everybody here hates neoliberalism it is very clear about who should be the victim and provides an ideological justification for cruel actions against own population. Like Bolshevism, it proved to be an extremely potent weapon of convincing population to act against their own economic interests (see What’s the matter with Kansas for details). Perfect tool for the brainwashing "peasants" if you wish, very important when "Pryanikov sladkih vsegna ne hvataet na vseh" (Okudzhava ).

marknesop
April 13, 2011 at 8:50 pm I believe the oil money will go on for some time yet. Current practices are sloppy and inefficient, and more oil could be realized with better, more modern techniques, as well as new discoveries coming online. However, an early start on overhauling general business practices would be time and money well spent.

Medvedev should draw a lesson from Skolkovo. This is a project he has personally sponsored and touted as Russia’s official debut in the high-tech sector. Western response, overall, has been withering and contemptuous, although some major commercial figures (such as Microsoft) have offered early investment optimism. Collective opinion seems to be that Russia will use the new tech city as a base from which to steal foreign technology secrets from investors, or that it will be a dismal failure because Russians have no real ideas of their own. The west is likely to greet other initiatives by Medvedev in the same manner – hearty laughter, followed by offers to come in and make western-style changes for him, in exchange for certain considerations.

kievite
April 14, 2011 at 1:21 am

Very true. Thanks for the response.

You are right: Skolkovo is fuzzy (what exactly is "high-tech") initiative as first of all Medvedev can’t abolish brain-drain and that what will happens with the most talented researchers. The only realistic bait he has is blocking the companies from entering Russian market unless they provide considerable degree of localization and require that some fraction of research be performed in such parks. That’s a variant of policy that China successfully used. But if Russia joins WTO, tariff barriers to protect domestic producers in vital sectors will be more difficult to erect.

At the same time autarky does not work either. So maneuvering between those Scylla of globalization and Charybdis of autarky requires top political skills from the captain of the ship.

Some sectors of Russian heavy industry already are proved abroad and products already have some competitive advantage and export markets. That’s where this comparative advantage needs to be preserved and enhanced with help of techno-parks. State subsidized R&D is really important here and can be provided via small university based local techno parks. This would an excellent employment opportunity for most talented students who otherwise might emigrate and such parks not necessary need any foreign participation. This is especially important if company is partially state owned, as this along with having reps at the board that protects the investment. OK, I would agree, that it’s not necessary need to be people on minister level. It would be sad if he really wants not to reform or improve, but to dismantle state capitalism.

The real problem here that without oil revenue Russia gets into zugzwang. Hopefully, as you noted, that will not be soon.

marknesop
April 14, 2011 at 3:30 am

Yes, you’re right about Skolkovo; I did a piece on it awhile back (here) and Chinese tech parks were cited as an example. It’s funny how the west is all gaga over China, and just brushes off the fact that China has a considerably more predatory business model than does Russia; China shamelessly raids the west for business information and constantly tests them for weaknesses which might be exploited. But, obtusely, it’s Russia that’s held up as the consummate corporate raider.

I believe if Russia were allowed to join the WTO, fewer barriers would be necessary. There’s no reason foreign companies shouldn’t have to contribute to the local economy, but they should receive tradeoffs as well such as low corporate tax rates, and that was one of the considerations. Medvedev seems determined that Skolkovo will succeed, while some elements in the west are just as determined it will be a failure. We’ll see. Russia is a world leader in medical research, and I understand that will be a big part of Skolkovo as well.

Does Russia represent an alternative to the neoliberal economic/social model?

It is difficult to say where Putin's brand of mixture of neoliberal and state capitalism get him and Russian people. I would say that the answer is "reserved no". Currently Russia, while opposing the US hegemony does not provide an alternative economic model. And that's the weakness of "Putinism".

Here is a left-biased, but still very interesting assessment of the situation along similar lines: "All attempts by Russia to develop a hypothetical line of response based on similar strategies (i.e. mobilizing a social response based on discontent) have no future, because Russia does not represent an alternative social model, not even in the realm of Illusion of Hope. " ([Oct 21, 2014] Question: Does Russia represent an alternative to the current western economic/social model? Or is this view an illusion based only on the conflict between some traditional vs. post-modern values?):

2014/10/19 | Sociología crítica

Danos tu opinión

Un amable lector de este blog ha realizado un resumen en inglés de nuestro artículo Las catedrales del kremlin y el capitalismo multipolar; es un resumen diferente al que nosotros hubiéramos hecho, pero de interés sin duda alguna. Ha sido publicado como apoyo a una pregunta en un coloquio con el economista ruso Mikhail Khazin organizado por The vineyard of the saker. Publicaremos aquí la respuesta.

Question: Does Russia represent an alternative to the current western economic/social model? Or is this view an illusion based only on the conflict between some traditional vs. post-modern values? / Arturo

For context to the question I will provide a translation / paraphrase / summary of some key points in the following article Las catedrales del kremlin y el capitalismo multipolar

The article contains and numbers many more points (36 in total) but I have translated/summarized only the first 14 (the rest is provided is a very raw translation --NNB)

  1. Moscow cannot defeat the American plans – i.e. the Anglo Zionist world elite – without contradicting the class interests of its own elites (Russian oligarchs): This is impossible because the system of sanctions and the blocking of access to their accounts and assets in the West generates such contradictions in the Russian power elites that, in practice, it prevents them from reacting adequately; it puts them on their knees before the America.
  2. Russia *could* resist those plans, since it possesses the strength, sense of identity, historical memory and material resources to do so. But in order to do so, its ruling elites would have to take measures that would affect their own class status within both the Russian system and the international system. And we can see that these are measures they are not willing to take. On the other hand, the Anglo Zionists suffer no such internal contradiction. Quite the opposite, in fact: Their own interest as the supporting base of the globalist hyperclass necessarily forces them to maintain the challenge to the end.
  3. By the term Anglo Zionists, in this analysis, we mean the dominant power group whose territorial and military base resides in the United States, and whose center originates in the historical and social links of the Anglo-American oligarchies, branching off to other historical central metropolis in Europe or other power centers in different parts of the world.
  4. The concept is made up of two elements that must be explained: the first, the “anglo” reference, has to do with the North American British connection [...] the second, the “zionist” reference, has to do with the interconnection among the economic and financial power groups that maintain various kinds of links with Israel. It is not so much a reference to ethnic origin, but rather to orientations as groups or lobbies of political and economic interests. A good part of this Zionist component consists of people who are neither Israelis nor Jews, but who feel identified with the pro-Israel lobby in the United States, Britain and other countries. Thus the term “zionist” referees here to an ideology, not to an ethnic origin.
  5. The Anglo elites on both sides of the Atlantic have evolved from being national elites to being the executive base of a world Hyperclass made up of individuals capable of exerting a determining influence in the most powerful nation, the United States.
  6. The result of the Anglo Zionist line of attack is that the contradiction and internal struggle is now occurring in Moscow between those who have already chosen to sell out and those who have not yet found the time to realize that a multipolar global capitalism is not viable.
  7. In this context, recovering Crimea was a mirage, an illusion.
  8. If we compare the implications of the Maidan coup in Kiev with the liberation of Crimea, we see that the strategic defeat implicit in losing Ukraine as an ally is of such magnitude that everything else pales by co s (all of them) in Kiev was so gigantic that its implications are frightening. It was either a failure or something even worse. In any case, the Crimea affair was merely a small episode in a confrontation that Russia is losing.
  9. Russia arrived very late at modern capitalism, and that is why its current elite will be unable to occupy a space among the globalist elite without paying the necessary toll, which is none other than renouncing its territorial power base – its country and its access to and control of its energy resources and raw materials.
  10. Stubbornly maintaining the dispute in trying to obtain a multi-polar capitalism, leads necessarily to a intra-capitalist confrontation, as it did in 1914-1918. And because of the nature of the current actors, nuclear powers … it brings the conflict to 2.0 war versions (color revolutions)
  11. All attempts by Russia to develop a hypothetical line of response based on similar strategies (i.e. mobilizing a social response based on discontent) have no future, because Russia does not represent an alternative social model, not even in the realm of Illusion of Hope. It can only elicit some empathy from those who reject the American domination, but here the class contradictions come into play again, because it is not enough to oppose Washington merely on political-military grounds, since the key to global power resides in the financial and military structures that enable global control and plunder: World Trade Organization, IMF, Free Trade agreements, World Bank, NATO… these are entities in relation to which Russia only shows its displeasure at not being invited to the table as an equal, not accepting that because it arrived late at modern capitalism, it must play a secondary role. On the other hand, Russia is ignoring the deep contempt, bordering on racism, that things Slavic generate among Anglo Zionist elites.
  12. In order to be able to fight the 2.0 versions of war that are engineered today, an alternative social model is needed. Alternative not only in regard to the postmodern vs. traditional sets of values, but fundamentally in regard to the social model that stems from the modes of production. In the postmodern vs. traditional conflict, Russia tends to align with the most reactionary values. And in regard to the social struggle, they don’t want to enter that fray because they renounced it long ago. They renounced the entire Soviet Union, which they destroyed from within.
  13. The contradictions and the dialectical nature of reality have their own logic, however. Thus, a coup in Kiev and the widespread appearance of Nazi symbols in the streets of Ukraine was all that it took to induce a spontaneous reaction in the Slavic world. The popular resistance in the Donbass took strong root thanks to the historic memory of the people’s of the old USSR and its war against fascism.
  14. If Russia were to abandon Novorossia to the oligarchs and their mafias, the world’s “left” – or whatever remains of it — would come to scorn post-Soviet Russia even more than it already does. In the months following the brave action in Crimea and the heroic resistance in the Donbass, many people around the world looked to Moscow in search of some sign that it would support the anti-fascist and anti-oligarchic resistance, even if only as an act of self-defense by Moscow against the globalist challenge. If it finally abandons Novorossia, the price in terms of loss of moral prestige will be absolute.
  15. A support of the left has not been sought, but that is a collateral consequence of the character of class struggle open that has been given in the Donbas, where Russia has been forced to provide some assistance that would prevent the genocide at the hands of the fascist Ukrainian.
  16. Cuando say left, we refer logically to the one who has expressed their support to the struggle of people in the Donbas, as it is very difficult to consider the "left" to those who have preferred to remain silent or to have directly been complicit in the assault, and the coup in Kiev.
  17. The degradation of the left as politically active social force is very intense, their structures are embroiled in the collapse, or in the confusion, when not literally corrupt. Then related to both socialist parties since 1914 and the communists, at least from the time of fracture of 1956. The social changes experienced in Europe with the systems of welfare state, based on the elevation of the standard of living of the working population and the obtaining of social peace by sharing the power with the trade unions are at the base of the post-industrial society and the resulting profound changes of values.

    The suicide of the USSR in 1989-93 marked a brutal global change , in which the balance which was preserved during the cold war was broken. That led to the capitalist elite in the west, which we are calling the Anglo-Zionists, to the suspension of the social pact (forced abandonment of New Deal), that gave rise to the welfare state and the emergence stark reality of a global power of capitalists without systemic opposition . Today the whole neoliberal globalization system of capitalism is in danger by the depletion of the natural resources. And to sustain this mode of production, they need to speed up territorial domination in the form of control and access to resources of other countries. Now there no space in the global system for spaces, which are managed autonomously even to a certain level.

  18. The system of global domination, capitalism, ruling elites with a territorial basis in the area of Anglo-American, global parasitic Hyperclass and depletion of resources, as well as cannibalization of the other nations, in the midst of troika of crisis of climate change, peak of the energy and raw materials shortages. those three factors that challenge the current globalization framework ... And the crisis of Novorossia, been demonstrated both impotence and the lack of real political autonomy of Russian elite with the respect to the dominant power in neoliberal worlds order..
  19. The new citizen movements in the western world are not so much resistance movements as samples of the discontent of the middle classes in precarious position of marginalization and/or social trance. This protest led to a "Maidans" which are not permanent and does not question the basis of the system. The participants seems to believe that it is possible to restore the old good world of the welfare state.
  20. The western movements are brainwashed by messages emanating from the headquarters of Democratic party of North America, the propaganda anarcho-capitalist and the various networks of ideological interference, are managing to break the bonds of historical memory that unite the struggles of the past with the present, de-ideologize the struggles and conflicts and to deny the tension left and right, isolating the militants -- or simple citizens who feel identified with the values of the left - of the masses who are suffering in the first place casualisation. At the heart of this new "left" are leaders that are co-opted voices, pseudo-intellectuals who destroy the words and empty of content of key concepts in a way that the alienation of the masses demonstrate at the language itself, thus preventing putting a real name to social process and things, and to identify the social phenomena.
  21. Viva to Russia, which the only country which eve in a weak form decided to fight neoliberal world order and position itself as an anti-imperialist force... It is interesting to observe the current great moral confusion in political landscape of the societies in decay. Confusion which have been stimulated by Moscow actions. As the result some the far-right groups that are simultaneously anti-US that anti-Russian now support Moscow. Also some part of Russia far-right political groups got the sympathy and support of factions of the anti EU far right forces in France, the Nazis of the MSR in Spain, and from small groups of euro-asianists. This line of political affiliation will allow them to simply join the Russia failure [to find alternative to monopolar neoliberal capitalism] and might well discredit then more profoundly in the future.
  22. The euro-asianists forces technically speaking are reactionary forces, neoliberal forces which is comparable to the worst of the worst in the western world. Moreover, they do not have any way to solve the main contradictions that arise in the current neoliberal model in the terms of class and dominance of Anglo Zionist global elite.
  23. Euro-Asianism is just a suitable ideology for the construction of Russian national idea for those who seeks to achieve lease to life for Russia sovereignty on the world stage. It is the actual proof that Russia has come too late to globalised capitalism and fascism...
  24. Huttington and his war of civilizations cynically exploit this confrontation on Anglo Zionist elite and newcomers, redefining it along the idea of the clash of civilizations which avoid using the notion of class and thus is ideologically false. Alexander Duguin who promote similar ideas quite seriously just shows the degree of degeneration of the Russian intelligentsia, which oscillates between serving as comprador class to the global Anglo Zionist elite and the repetition (as a farce, and with 75 years of delay ) of fascist reactionary revolutions in Western Europe, which were phenomenon of the interwar period (rexistas in Belgium, Croix de feu in France, CruzFlechados in Hungary, Requetés and Falangistas in Spain).
  25. The globalist elite offered a solution formulated in class terms, as it could not be another way: in the best cases, they proposes the co-optation to a handful of members of the Russian elite as deserving members of the new global Hyperclass, but this path is opened only the very very rich, and the pre-condition is the delivery of the country to plunder, where the global elite certainly would have need of some compradors which will be more or less adequately compensated depending on their achievements and sacrifices in the name of global neoliberal domination.
  26. The part of the power elite of Russia, which managed to expel the western compradors of the Yeltsin era, and rein in the oligarchs then, had tried with some success to regain control of the territory of the country. The illusion of the members of this part of the power elite -- basically the security services, both civil and military, and various synergies of those with the military-industrial lobby -- is that it would be enough to neutralize the Russian fifth column of the Anglo Zionists to take back control of their territorial base of power. this idea is going to be shredded into pieces when it enter into contradiction with the reality of the class struggle and interests of the elite at the global level. Russia is, for its size, influence, and resources, so huge that a line of action based on the defense of its sovereignty strategic enters in collision with the global power of neoliberalism. And that why it attracts disproportional reaction of the Anglo Zionists
  27. Supporters of Anglo Zionists that are ready to consent to a German-Russian alliance or Russia-EU alliance that give the viability of a idea of mutually beneficial co-development of both Russia and Europe are forgetting that such an action would require European sovereignty. Which is was non-existent iether on the level of the EU, or on the level of member states. The penetration of the Atlantism in Europe is already systemic. In the old European states there are still ancient national traditions, which were based on the basis of cultural, industrial, economic, and political identity. And they still run strong. But in the current situation for such states there no space for the sovereignty as the dominant power bloc in the national elite as well as in EU elite are Atlantists. Where this situation takes the Russian elite and the Russian state without confrontation? A confrontation that they, on the other hand are not willing and are not able to pursue.
  28. The multi-polar capitalist world had its lifespan which come to an end (exploded) in 1914. In 2014, the globalization of the elites and the capital is of such magnitude that no serious resistance is possible on the basis of some capitalist model. In those conditions the idea of Russian elite ability to enforce change to multipolar version of the currently monopolar neoliberal world is doomed to be a failure.
  29. Zbigniew Brezinsky has raised things crudely and openly, unlike the ("fake") supporters of perestroika, and their current heirs in Russia. Brezinsky know how to think in terms of the class contradiction and knows perfectly well that the Russian oligarchy has directed its monetary flows abroad, moved families abroad, and moved their investments abroad. That means that Anglo Zionists can disrupt any claim of sovereignty over the territory and resources by simply pressing the local neoliberal elite, giving them to choose between their interests as a class and their illusionary desire for sovereignty. Because in a globalized world, with its brutal fight for the natural resources there is no possibility of maintaining both, except what can be achieved in terms of direct anti-imperialist struggle. There is no space for the national bourgeoisies in the XXI century. You can only have sovereignty if it is posed in terms of a rupture with the actually existing neoliberal order of global capitalism, which, in its core is Anglo Zionists globalization. This break does not have to be forced, but in terms of scientific analysis of the social processes is a logical consequence of following this path one way or the other. To claim sovereignty over their own resources and territory inevitably leads to confrontation, and logical needs a break up and confront the Anglo Zionist empire. If you really want to achieve the goal. And that fact imposes the logic of the relationships and balance of power in the world today.
  30. The claims of the BRIC countries -- to the extent that you do not question them -- is that they have an alternative model to the dominant neoliberal capitalism model (Ango Zionist globalization with the center in the USA) are doomed to be a failure. The efforts of the BRIC countries can generate a lot of noise and discomfort for the West, but they can not break the global neoliberal system. Those countries are rightfully fearful of their budget balances -- which are very fragile. It can be even said that they are on their way to implosion sooner or later, due to the unbalanced structure of their internal classes, including first of all their own elite.
  31. The claim that it is possible to achieve the multipolar capitalist world (which Russia defends) and which led to current Ukrainian crisis without confrontation is false. As soon as Russia wanted to return to the global chessboard. as an independent player, they instantly saw opponents attacking weak elements of their defense at the borders. Ukraine has been a defeat for Russia and the Crimea is not a adequate compensation for loss of Ukraine. Now Novorossia is being sacrificed precisely because the class contradictions that have emerged in Moscow and lack of desire of Russian elite to go the bitter end.
  32. The situation in the Donbas / Novorossia clearly shows the resignation of Moscow to the victory, and their desire to avoid the clash with neoliberal world order. The fact is that Royal Dutch Shell has already begun the fracking in the Donbas, the coup regime in Kiev are already internationally accepted without reservations, the truce imposed in Novorossia has brought to its knees the armed resistance to junta. All this leads way to deliver Novorossia to the hands of mafias sponsored by the local oligarchs with friends in Kiev and Moscow.
  33. Statement that the destiny of Russia was played in the Donbas is something more than a phrase, It is a claim based on a reality, as the defeat of Novorossia would be the proof that Moscow had not the will to struggle. The betrayal of the fighters and the hopes of Novorossia is the acceptance of the defeat and might lead in the future to the victory to the Moscow Maidan, the same alliance of compradors and nationalists using which as storm troopers the globalist elite achieved their goal in Ukraine. If Novorossia is defeated, they can expect being able to push a puppet into the Kremlin the same way. And not without reason. This summer, the heroic struggle of the militia of the Donbas was the key element that forced the changes of the script designed for Kiev as well as diminished chances of successful application of the same methods in Moscow. The Minsk Agreements and the truce imposed by them are putting Novorossia on its knees, allowing for its destruction, but this time at the hands of their allies. Sad spectacle for the Russian security services, which were effective enough to organize the Donbas resistance, but now are useless and powerless before the neofascist Kiev junta.
  34. The struggle of the Donbas does not correspond to the strategic interests of the Russian elite. They have been forced to intervene to prevent the horror of the mass murder of the population of the Donbas at the hands of the extreme right. But the dream of a Donbas free of oligarchs and with a sovereign state, committed to social justice for workers on this Slavic land are completely incompatible with the post-soviet status quo. Only to the extent that there is a significant faction of Russian elite aware of the contradictions of the global neoliberal game and who put their sense of patriotism first can lead them to face the challenge that they face. Only in this case there would be any possibility of resistance; I would say patriotic resistance, because we already know no one at the top is able to think in terms of class.
  35. While very unlikely - there can be a move from February to October in Novorossia. You would say impossible. But he insurrection of the Donbas in March, logically was "February". In order to achieve victory, to take full control over the territory of Donetsk and Lugansk needs creation of the Revolutionary Military Council and suspension of the upcoming elections. which looking to be a smokescreen for capitulation to junta. They need to declare that they are ready to resist to the end. This output would be desperate move, without a doubt, and would represent the equivalent of a new "October". The event which of it occurs would force Moscow to show their cards to their own population. And perhaps it can help to generate a pulse necessary for the organization of the fight with Anglo Zionists empire between the towers of the Kremlin. That would move the fight toward more patriotic and popular goals, But this presuppose a lot of assumptions and first of all that such a "Kremlin tower", which is capable of emitted such a pulse, exists. Only in this case we can talk about achieving a real sovereignty. As Vasily Záitsev in Stalingrad suggested: "Maybe we're doomed, but for the moment we are still the masters and lords of our land." In Novorossia there are plenty of fighters who would agree with Záitsev, but they certainly lack political direction and, now the lack the support of Kremlin.
  36. The Russian objective is achieving a multipolar capitalism with a Russia united under a nationalist ideology based on the manipulation of patriotic sentiment, Orthodoxy and various Slavic myths. This objective is being challenged by the reality of the conflict, which should be defined in terms of geopolitical goals. The reality is that the Russian elite would be allowed to control their population as they wish, provided they renounce its sovereignty over territory and resources, renounce their physical power base, i.e. homeland. This is the nature of the challenge. Putin is mistaken if he thinks that the Grand Patriarch has the answer in their holy books. There is not enough incense in the Kremlin cathedrals to mask that reality.”

Demonization of Putin as part of Russophobia

The Demonization of Putin is Not a Policy.
It is an Alibi for the Absence of One

Henry Kissinger

Now let's discuss attempts to demonize Putin by Western MSM. They can be understood only in context of rabid Russophobia of US neocons and their poodles in GB and other Western countries (especially in Germany).

Being tactful of Putin is one thing that I would not criticize the US press for ;-). If only because the track record disqualify them from lecturing, but because one simple fact: I remember how they covered the Chechen disaster and how they covered Iraq invasion by the USA. I strongly dislike Chechen war, as do most Russians. However, it is true that Chechen fundamentalists financed by Saudis have killed hundreds of Caucasian and Russian civilians and were a real threat to the Russian society, whereas the Iraqis were no practical threat to the USA.

Another problem with demonizing Putin is that no one in the US political system is willing to criticize the policies of Boris Yeltsin, which ruined the majority of Russian people, falsified elections and included criminals in his inner circle under close guidance of the USA. Sometime it looks to me that the real Axis of Evil runs somewhere between K Street and Constitution Avenue.

And in addition most of US neocons who dominated the USA foreign policy establishment sincerely consider themselves the only game in town. While understanding very little, or absolutely nothing about other countries. And that is statement is equally applicable to neocons dominated MSM such as NYT and Wash Post. American exeptionalism is uniquely blinding phenomenon.

It is actually pretty sad to read the infinite low of articles written without any desire to understand the complex situation in modern Russia. Neocons analytics in regard to Russia is nauseating propaganda. The logic behind such articles is invariably hostile. Moscow either weak or repressive or both. If Moscow sees some processes as a threat, it is racist, if it just lets it happen, it is weak.

No good solution for Russia ever exists according to these people. And it would be better for Russia and the rest of the world if it disappears from the face of Earth as quickly as possible.

See Demonization of Putin for more details.

Apartheid regime in Baltic countries as part of Russophobia campaign launched after dissolution of the USSR

Another influential part of world Russophobic community are Apartheid regimes established in Baltic countries with the direct help of the USA government and, especially, USA emigrant organizations. Western Ukraine also fit this scenario (after EuroMaidan putsch Western Ukrainian when far right nationalists came to power).

Baltic countries refuse to provide citizenship to people of different ethnicity who lawfully lived in them during the USSR period (which lasted half a century or so). Here is an insightful take on Russophobia from veteran Novosty journalist by Pyotr Romanov

A Dispassionate View on Russophobia

10/04/2006

Ability to write about Russophobia dispassionately is similar to the ability to maintain dignity when somebody unexpectedly poor a dirty water all over your head. However, as far as possible, try to talk about this phenomenon, no offense. We will not resent the fact that the "Russian, according to British press - the most stupid in the world." Smile at the argument that the "war against Napoleon won the non-Russian, and lice." We will not discuss with the Japanese man in the street, which feels an antipathy to us, among other things because all the cold storms come on the street it from Russia.

Forget about the Finns, who, according to Western opinion polls, do not love us more than any foreigners. And this at a time when, according to domestic opinion polls, that the Finns have the highest Russian sympathies.

What to do: love evil. In short, keep yourself in hand. It is better to remember the words of George Nathaniel Curzon Marquis, Viceroy of India and at the time the British Foreign Minister: "Every Englishman comes to Russia as Russophobe, and left as a Russophile" This means that in the basis of antipathy towards the Russian lies ignorance and myths. Partly born of life itself, partly by skillful professionals employed by our political opponents: there is such a thing as information warfare. And this is not limited to the Soviet period, but can be traced since ancient times. The disappearance of the Soviet Union did not affect Russophobia much. "New Thinking", which Gorbachev dreamed about never materialized. There is also historical memory. If we talk about ethnophobias, this is an inexhaustible source of poisoned water.

We can present many additional examples, but even from what has been said above, it is clear that the problem is multifaceted and so deeply ingrained in the mind of a typical Western person (to say nothing about establishment -- NNB) that for Russians it is better to forget about an illusion that it can be cured or even drastically changed. Each countermeasure is only a palliative solution.

Thus we should not deceive ourselves - any countermeasure is only palliative. Russophobia glow can be reduced, but to end it might be impossible as is the case with other ethnophoibias.

However, even to lower the level of Russophobia is a difficult undertaking which requires considerable intellectual efforts and financial investments. In addition, the Russian professionals in the field of foreign media (or propaganda, sorry for such old-fashioned word) are long time already listed in the "red book". After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the new government decided that the professionals who know how to work with foreign media are no longer needed, everything will be done automatically: our friends Bill and Helmut will help. In extreme cases, retired professionals can be without problems replaced by the young and energetic sneakers merchants. It did not happen. Meanwhile, the bad image of Russia means for the country significant economic and political losses.

When it comes to Russophobia, the questions usually turns out to be a surplus, but the answers, even the most sophisticated, almost always may be subject to reasoned criticism. This is further evidence of the complexity and ambiguity of the problem. For example, surveys carried out by foreigners, record that in recent years the attitude to the Russian in almost all countries around the world deteriorated. It would seem that there is nothing to rejoice, meanwhile, history has repeatedly argued that a weakened Russia is far less negative feelings abroad than Russia on the path to recovery, when she, like Phoenix, once again rises from the ashes. Thus, the sharp deterioration of perceptions of Russia by foreigners can simultaneously be a sign that Moscow is perusing a wrong policy, and, conversely, that is peruse absolutely correct policy. It is difficult to sort out.

By the way, if we were talking about the West here, it is curious to see how the West steps for many centuries on the same rake. Whenever Russia is experiencing the most difficult times, Western politicians, believing Russia is close to death, begin to seriously talk about her vivisection, and, conversely, when the "deceased" Russia suddenly opens his eyes, the West falls into mortal fear and hysteria. So it was during the Troubled Times, when the Poles, Swedes and British tried to split Russian lands apart. Under Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich, when Russia was still weakened Western Europe for the sake of preserving peace in its own backyard identified zones of expansion of the major European powers: our motherland, according to this "peace plan", was granted to the Swedes. The only thing that did not consider the German philosopher, mathematician, lawyer and theologian, Gottfried Leibniz -- the author of this ingenious plan -- the birth of Peter the Great. By the end of the reign of Peter Sweden ceased to be a great power, Russia become an empire, and a Russian soldier, frightened Europe to such hiccups, from which it can not escape for a long time.

Then there was the defeat in the Crimean War, which, as it seemed to many European politicians, forever cemented lag Russian from the outside world, but came to the liberal reforms of Alexander II, who once again raised Russia from its knees. Later there was a First World, revolution, civil war, and those event immediately generated Churchill plan to put an end to Russia once and forever, dismembering her to pieces. And this project also ended in failure, but instead came back scared the West Europeans almost to death, the Soviet Union.

Finally, the collapse of the USSR has created new hopes, and the emergence of a Russian helm of Putin produced a new disappointment: hatred intermixed with fear. Here are typical in the West, the view expressed by one of the Italian journalists: "The USSR is considered a country, lost forever. The recent emergence of Russia as a nation state was a bolt from the sky. " And that's madam did not know yet what order book of Russian defense enterprises in the past year increased by 61%, as recently reported by Russian President. Thunder would be simply deafening.

In short, we are dealing with a déjà vu all over gain: the same way foreign press treated Russia in Europe and after the Troubled Times and after the Crimean War, and after the Revolution of 1917 .

Of course, the fact that due to the fear of Russian bear whose jaws are in Europe, and the tail is located in the Far East, simultaneously flourish Russophobia, does not make Russians happy. But I personally, if we have to choose, prefer to have a strong Russia with a undesirable side effect in the form of Russophobia, than the Russian bear's skin over the fireplace in some western office, which the owner, proudly showing visitors, affectionately scratching behind his ear. Without experiencing any of Russophobia!

Are there any tools that would provide the West at least a middle ground between a pathological fear of Russian and not less pathological contempt for her? I think it is. All I will not enumerate them all. But one thing worth mentioning is mandatory. Necessary, finally, once and for all clear the historic debris, which is really to blame Russian. We can remember, say, Russian-Polish friction because of Katyn. The fact that Stalin's regime committed a crime, we know the whole world, but Russia, including the modern Russia, could not find the courage to tell the whole truth about the Polish tragedy. If you want to, once again apologize, and most importantly to pass, finally, Warsaw, all at our disposal documents. In the end, there are still living relatives of the victims, who have every right to know how their relatives died. Why this is not done until now, I can not understand, especially because the crime is committed not this generation, but fundamentally different, the Stalinist regime.

At the same time, giving the necessary debt, in my opinion, in any case we can not forget about our own claims. Unlike its neighbors, we all too easy to forgive, but it does not promote respect for Russia. Yes, there was Katyn. But until it was no less terrible fate of the Russian prisoners who fell into the hands of the Poles after the failure of the famous Tukhachevsky offensive of Warsaw. There are undeniable evidence how they treated those prisoners, both in Russia and the West. Division of assistance to POW in Poland of the American Union of Christian youth on October 20, 1920 noted that the Russian prisoners were kept in deplorable conditions: indoors, totally unsuitable for housing, with no furniture, sleeping aids, and most importantly - no glass in the windows, despite the cold. In the prisoners had no shoes, clothing, medicines, not enough medical personnel, food. All of the above, conclude U.S. observers, leads "to the rapid extinction of prisoners of war." Really dying by the thousands. No wonder the Lviv newspaper "Forward" December 22, 1920 calls Tuchola camp a "death camp". Thus, Katyn and Tuchola stand side by side. And it is necessary to treat this and ask the Poles of repentance for the brutal treatment of Russian. By the way, we should not have any illusion. About the same barbaric way the Red Army prisoners of war were treated, Baltic states treated the White Army Yudenich forces which retreat to their land. They allowed to passed then through the border in small groups, then confiscated all the weapon, after another mile all the valuables, and then clothes. So they beat is on the based on ideology but simply because they were Russians. Defending our ancestors who were subjected to abuse, we are seeking not only justice but also of self-respect. Man, do not mindful of kinship, respect is not deserved.

However, even if it has been said above about Russophobia, only a small drop in the cap or a smallest piece of a huge iceberg.

In addition, there is still the main problem, without deal with which all the fighting Russophobia is meaningless. This problem is ourselves: our standard of living, our culture, the development of our civil society, our internal and foreign policy, our military and economic power. Weak are always subject to humiliation: that is, unfortunately, human nature.

Any countermeasures -- although without them it situation might get worse -- no matter how sophisticated and skilled as they are, still no substitute for that, I'm talking about. So, first of all, to deal with all of us Russophobia requires a healthy and strong Russia. The fact that in this country and to live pleasantly, of course.

The old wisdom says, to be respected around, start to start to respect himself - a thing that you have created with their own hands.

And there, staring, reconsider their views on the Russian, even touchy Finns.

Coverage of Russia in Western MSMs resembles war propaganda

The Western media even before the Ukrainian Maidan was broadcast events in Russia exclusively in a negative way. Attempts are being made to discredit almost all Russian initiatives and projects, ranging from the Olympics to the elections of the President, etc. For the implementation of anti-Russian propaganda standard techniques of "projection" polished in color revolutions were used. That includes activization via NGOs of the opposition media and opposition figures within the country. The set of  "prisoners of conscience" was created from   academics, businessmen and politicians, who, for various reasons, wished to leave Russia for the West. Corrupt businessmen, who escaped to the West to avoid prosecution in Russia became prisoner of conscience and political oppositionist on the moment they cross the border. Anti-Russian propaganda aims in stressing civilizational, cultural, intellectual backwardness of Russia compared "advanced and enlightened" West.

The purpose of this propaganda "strangulation" of Russia is instituting "regime change" and bring to power the second generation of compradors. As well as further dismemberment of its territory. Some forms on internal conflict are supported as a part of destabilization strategy. With the ultimate goal of second partitioning of Russia and the emergence of new quasi-independent States.

To understand the coverage of Russia in western MSM one needs to understand the mechanisms of war propaganda. The latter is guided by the following postulates well known since the WWI (Falsehood in War-Time):

1. We do not want war.
2. The opposite party alone is guilty of war.
3. The enemy is the face of the devil.
4. We defend a noble cause, not our own interest.
5. The enemy systematically commits cruelties; our mishaps are involuntary.
6. The enemy uses forbidden weapons.
7. We suffer small losses, those of the enemy are enormous.
8. Artists and intellectuals back our cause.
9. Our cause is sacred. "The ages-old 'God bless America' is playing once more."
10. All who doubt our propaganda, are traitors.

This topic is discussed in more details elsewhere, but a good starting point is the book Propaganda: The Formation of Men's Attitudes (1965/1973) by French philosopher, theologian, legal scholar, and sociologist Jacques Ellul. This book was one the first attempt to study propaganda from a sociological approach as well as a psychological one. It presents a taxonomy for propaganda methods, including such paired opposites as

During World War II, Ellul was a leader in the French resistance after being discharged as a professor from French universities by the Vichy regime. After France's liberation, he became professor at the University of Bordeaux. He authored 58 books and numerous articles over his lifetime, the dominant theme of which has been the threat to human freedom created by modern technology. In 1947, Ellul was appointed chair of law and social history at the Institut d'études politiques that increased his reputation as a social and political philosopher which led to the publication of his works in the United States. Here is an abridged Wikipedia summary:

Background of propaganda attacks against Russia

...."The Institute for Propaganda Analysis, inspired by Harold Lasswell" defined propaganda as "the expression of opinions or actions carried out deliberately by individuals or groups with a view to influencing the opinions or actions of other individuals or groups for predetermined ends and through psychological manipulations".[3]

This definition seemed more accurate and was supported by others such as Goebbels, a German propagandist, who stated, "We do not talk to say something, but to obtain a certain effect."[ Similarly F.C. Bartlett holds an accurate interpretation of the goal of propaganda as not merely as an instrument to increase political understanding of events, but to obtain results through action. Ellul supports the idea that propaganda is made primarily because of a will to action for the purpose of effectively arming policy made by the State. Leonard Doob, an American specialist, defined propaganda in 1948 as "the attempt to affect the personalities and to control the behavior of individuals towards desired ends."

Unending definitions show the uncertainty among specialists and the inability of definitions to encompass all that is propaganda. Just because the term propaganda cannot be defined with any degree of precision does not mean that attempts to define it should be abandoned.

"Very frequently propaganda is describe as a manipulation for the purpose of changing idea or opinions of making individuals 'believe' some idea or fact, and finally of making them adhere to some doctrine—all matters of the mind. It tries to convince, to bring about a decision, to create a firm adherence to some truth. This is a completely wrong line of thinking: to view propaganda as still being what it was in 1850 is to cling to an obsolete concept of man and of the means to influence him; it is to condemn oneself to understand nothing about propaganda. The aim of modern propaganda is no longer to modify ideas, but to provoke action. It is no longer to change adherence to a doctrine, but to make the individual cling irrationally to a process of action. It is no longer to transform an opinion but to arouse an active and mythical belief."

...He holds that the main concern of propaganda through psychological influence is sparking action to a desired response by developing learned attitudes. ....

Summary of chapters

Propaganda: The Formation of Men's Attitudes is divided into five substantive chapters discussing Ellul’s analysis. Introduction

Regardless of the State, propaganda should be viewed as situated at the center of the growing powers of governmental and administrative techniques.

"Differences in political regimes matter little; differences in social levels are more important; and most important is national self-awareness. Propaganda is a good deal less the political weapon of a regime (it is that also) than the effect of a technological society that embraces the entire man and tends to be a completely integrated society. Propaganda stops man from feeling that things in society are oppressive and persuades him to submit with good grace."[7] Chapter One: Characteristics of Propaganda

Modern propaganda is a technique that requires an analysis of both environment and individual to be subjected to propaganda therefore it is based on scientific analyses of psychology and sociology. Sufficient understanding of these two areas creates the most effective propaganda and without the scientific research of modern psychology and sociology there would be no propaganda. "Step by step the propagandist builds the techniques on the basis of his knowledge of man, his tendencies, his desires, his needs, his psychic mechanisms, his conditioning, and as much on social psychology as on depth psychology."[8] 1.Part One: External Characteristics

Propaganda is first and foremost concerned with influencing an individual psychologically by creating convictions and compliance through imperceptible techniques that are effective only by continuous repetition. Propaganda employs encirclement on the individual by trying to surround man by all possible routes, in the realm of feelings as well as ideas, by playing on his will or his needs through his conscious and his unconscious, and by assailing him in both his private and his public life.[9] The propagandist also acknowledges the most favorable moment to influence man is when an individual is caught up in the masses. Propaganda must be total in that utilizes all forms of media to draw the individual into the net of propaganda. Propaganda is designed to be continuous within the individual's life by filling the citizen’s entire day. It is based on slow constant impregnation that functions over a long period of time exceeding the individual’s capacities for attention or adaptation and thus his capabilities of resistance. In order for propaganda to maintain encirclement, it must be exerted by an organization capable of influencing psychological channels that reach the individual. Psychological and physical actions are inseparable elements to propaganda, however, if no influence is exerted by an organization than there can be no propaganda because it cannot operate in a vacuum. The necessity for a physical organization limits propaganda enterprises and in order to be effective propaganda must work inside a group, principally inside a nation. Propaganda must first organize the masses in order to propagandize within the masses. In general, propaganda is a set of methods employed by an organized group that wants to bring about the active or passive participation in its actions of a mass of individuals, psychologically unified through psychological manipulations and incorporated into an organization.[10] Propaganda should no longer be viewed in terms of an orthodoxy but rather modern propaganda should be seen as an orthopraxy because it aims for participation not adherence. Participation can be active or passive: active if propaganda has been able to mobilize the individual for action; passive if the individual does not act directly but psychologically supports that action. 2. Part Two: Internal Characteristics The second major element that a propagandist must understand is the environment in which the individual operates, mainly the foci of interest of the public. An understanding of the conventional patterns and stereotypes that pre-exist in a milieu provide the propagandist with material from which to build off. Propaganda is not able to create something out of nothing and is confined to developing pre-existing material thereby expressing the fundamental currents of the society it seeks to influence. These currents include accepted structures such as collective sociological presuppositions and myths that are fundamental to society.

"The Four Great Collective Sociological Presuppositions in the Modern World: 1.That an individual's aim in life is happiness. 2.That man is naturally good. 3.That history develops in endless progress. 4.That everything is matter.

The Collective Myths: 1.of Work 2.of Happiness 3.of the Nation 4.of Youth 5.of the Hero"[11]

These currents reinforce socieand hold man’s mjor convictions and propa ganda must voice this reality. Propaganda is concerned with timeliness since an individual is only moved to action if he is pushed towards a timely one by propaganda. Once it becomes history it inevitably becomes neutral and indifferent to the individual who is sensitive primarily to current news. "Operational words" are used to penetrate an individual’s indifference. However they lose their value as immediacy passes as old facts are replaced by new ones. The "current events man" is carried along the current of news and caught in the events of today, losing interest in the events of yesterday. The indifferent are apolitical and without opinion, therefore they are outside of propaganda’s grasp. Incidentally, there are also the undecided, people whose opinions are vague, who form the majority of citizens within the collective. These citizens are the most susceptible to control of public opinion that is dictated by propaganda. Lastly, this part discusses propaganda and truth or the ability of propaganda to relay something as true based not on the accuracy of facts but of reality. Propaganda veils the truth with falsehoods even though lying is generally to be avoided. 3. Part Three: Categories of Propaganda Presented in this chapter is a sophisticated taxonomy for propaganda, including such paired opposites as political-sociological, vertical-horizontal, rational-irrational, and agitation-integration.

Political vs. Sociological Propaganda:

Political Propaganda involves techniques of influence employed by a government, a party, an administration, or a pressure group with the intention of changing the behavior of the public. The themes and objectives of this type of propaganda are of a political nature. The goals are determined by the government, party, administration, or pressure group. The methods of political propaganda are calculated in a precise manner and its main criteria is to disseminate an ideology for the very purpose of making various political acts acceptable to the people.[12] There are two forms of political propaganda, tactical and strategic. Tactical political propaganda seeks to obtain immediate results within a given framework. Strategic political propaganda is not concerned with speed but rather it establishes the general line, the array of arguments, and the staging of campaigns.

Political propaganda reversed is sociological propaganda because the ideology is penetrated by means of its sociological context. Propaganda, as it is traditionally known, implies an attempt to spread an ideology through the mass media of communication in order to lead the public to a desired action. In sociological propaganda even media that are not controllable such as individual art work, films, and writing reflect the ideology allowing for an accelerated penetration of the masses and the individuals within them.[13]

Sociological propaganda is a phenomenon where a society seeks to integrate the maximum number of individuals into itself by unifying its members’ behavior according to a pattern, spreading its style of life abroad, and thus imposing itself on other groups. Essentially sociological propaganda aims to increase conformity with the environment that is of a collective nature by developing compliance with or defense of the established order through long term penetration and progressive adaptation by using all social currents. The propaganda element is the way of life with which the individual is permeated and then the individual begins to express it in film, writing, or art without realizing it. This involuntary behavior creates an expansion of society through advertising, the movies, education, and magazines. "The entire group, consciously or not, expresses itself in this fashion; and to indicate, secondly that its influence aims much more at an entire style of life."[14] This type of propaganda is not deliberate but springs up spontaneously or unwittingly within a culture or nation. This propaganda reinforces the individual’s way of life and represents this way of life as best. Sociological propaganda creates an indisputable criterion for the individual to make judgments of good and evil according to the order of the individual’s way of life. Sociological propaganda does not result in action, however, it can prepare the ground for direct propaganda. From then on, the individual in the clutches of such sociological propaganda believes that those who live this way are on the side of the angels, and those who don’t are bad.[15]

Vertical vs. Horizontal Propaganda: Vertical propaganda is similar to direct propaganda that aims at the individual in the mass and is renewed constantly. However, in horizontal propaganda there is no top down structure but rather it springs up from within the group. It involves meticulous encirclement that traps an individual involuntarily in dialectic. The individual is led unfailingly to its adherence by talking about the dialectic until the individual discovers the answer that was set up unconsciously for him to find. Schools are a primary mechanism for integrating the individual into the way of life.

Rational vs. Irrational Propaganda:

Propaganda is addressed to the individual on the foundation of feelings and passions which are irrational, however, the content of propaganda does address reason and experience when it presents information and furnishes facts making it rational as well. It is important for propaganda to be rational because modern man needs relation to facts. Modern man wants to be convinced that by acting in a certain way he is obeying reason in order to have self justification. The challenge is creating an irrational response on the basis of rational and factual elements by leaving an impression on an individual that remains long after the facts have faded away. Individuals are not compelled to act based facts but rather on emotional pressure, the vision of the future, or the myth.

Agitation vs. Integration propaganda: Propaganda of agitation seeks to mobilize people in order to destroy the established order and/or government. It seeks rebellion by provoking a crisis or unleashing explosive movements during one. It momentarily subverts the habits, customs, and beliefs that were obstacles to making great leap forward by addressing the internal elements in each of us. It eradicates the individual out of his normal framework and then proceeds to plunge him into enthusiasm by suggesting extraordinary goals which nevertheless seem to him completely within reach. However, this enthusiasm can only last a short duration so the objective must be achieved quickly followed by a period of rest. People cannot be kept at in a "state of perpetual enthusiasm and insecurity". Rebellion is incited by the propagandist who knows that hate is one of the most profitable resources when drawn out of an individual. Agitation propaganda is usually thought of as propaganda in that it aims to influence people to act. Integration propaganda, on the other hand, is a more subtle form that aims to reinforce cultural norms. This is sociological in nature because it provides stability to society by supporting the "way of life" and the myths within a culture. It is propaganda of conformity that requires participation in the social body. This type of propaganda is more prominent and permanent, yet it is not as recognized as agitation propaganda because it is more permanent manner. Basically, agitation propaganda provides the motive force when needed and when not needed integration propaganda provides the context and backdrop. Chapter Two: The Condition for the Existence of Propaganda

The nature of propaganda has changed over the course of time and yet it is evident that propaganda cannot exist without a milieu. The emergence of propaganda is interconnected with technology and scientific discoveries yet it can only appear and grow under certain conditions. Several events have occurred that have furthered propaganda by increasing its ability in depth and discovering new methods. Modern propaganda could not exist without the mass media or modern means of transportation which permit crowds of diverse individuals from all over to assemble easily and frequently. 1.Part One: The Sociological Conditions

Society must contain elements of both an individualist society and a mass society. Propaganda aims to capture both the mass and the individual at the same time through this dual type of society. A mass society is based on individuals that are reduced to ciphers based on what they have in common to others. First conditions for growth and development of modern propaganda: it emerged in Western Europe in the nineteenth century and the first half of the twentieth precisely because that was when society was becoming increasingly individualistic and its organic structures were breaking down. Individuals without natural organic local groups are defenseless and more likely to be caught up in a social current. On the other hand, a mass society has considerable population density in which local structures and organizations are weak, currents of opinion are strongly felt creating a certain psychological unity, and individuals are organized into large and influential collectives. Mass society is characterized by uniformity and material life despite differences of environment. Once a mass society is created, public opinion will begin to play a role to help individuals form their own personal opinion. Public opinion can only express itself through channels which are provided by the mass media of communication without which there could be no propaganda. Yet it is important that mass media be subject to centralized control in order to successfully form public opinion without any opposition. Again Ellul mentions that the individual must be caught in wide net of media through all channels. Once opinion has been formed, propaganda is able to reinforce it and transform opinion into action. 2. Part Two: Objective Conditions of Total Propaganda Propaganda thrives off of what individuals have in common with others to develop patterns of behavior and modify cultural opinions. Total propaganda recognizes that within a nation individuals should all have in common a standard of living, a culture, and an ideology. The need of an average standard of living is that people must be able to afford to buy a radio, TV, a newspaper, or go to the movies. It is mostly concerned with the densest mass which is made up of average men and not the very rich or very poor. Poor cannot do this therefore they cannot be subjected to integration propaganda because the immediate concerns of daily life absorb all their capacities and efforts. The poor can only be subjected to agitation propaganda, excited to the point of theft and murder. But they cannot be trained by propaganda, kept in hand, channeled, and oriented. More advanced propaganda can influence only a man who is not completely haunted by poverty, a man who can view things from a certain distance and be reasonably unconcerned about his daily bread, who therefore can take an interest in more general matters.

"For propaganda to be effective the propagandee must have a certain store of ideas and a number of conditioned reflexes that can only be acquired through peace of mind springing from relative security. The establishment of a mode of common life- all this leads to the creation of a type of normal man conveniently leads all men toward that norm via a multitude of paths. Propaganda’s intent is to integrate people into the normal pattern prevailing in society bring about conformance to way of life. To sum up: The creation of normalcy in our society can take one of two shapes. It can be the result of scientific, psycho-sociological analysis based on statistics- that is the American type of normalcy. It can be ideological and doctrinaire- that is the Communist type. But the results are identical: such normalcy necessarily gives rise to propaganda that can reduce the individual to the pattern most useful to society."[16]

"Information" Is an essential element of propaganda, which must "have reference to political or economic reality" to be credible. In fact, no propaganda can work until the moment when a set of facts has become a problem in the eyes of those who constitute public opinion." Education permits the dissemination of propaganda in that it enables people to consume information. Information is indistinguishable from propaganda in that information is an essential element of propaganda because for propaganda to succeed it must have reference to political or economic reality. Propaganda grafts itself onto an already existing reality through "informed opinion". Where no informed opinion with regard to political or economic affairs propaganda cannot exist making it an indispensable aspect. Propaganda means nothing without preliminary information that provides the basis for propaganda, gives propaganda the means to operate, and generates the problems that propaganda exploits by pretending to offer solutions. It is through information that the individual is placed in a social context and learns to understand the reality of his own situation. Information allows us to evaluate our situation feel our own personal problems are a general social problem thus enabling propaganda to entice us into social and political action. Information is most effective when it is objective and broad because it creates a general picture. With information quantity is better than quality, the more political or economic facts believed to be mastered by an individual, the more sensitive their judgment is to propaganda. In fact, only in and through propaganda do the masses have access to political economy, politics, art, or literature. The more stereotypes in a culture, the easier it is to form public opinion, and the more an individual participates in that culture, the more susceptible he becomes to the manipulation of these symbols. Chapter Three: The Necessity for Propaganda

All propaganda is based on a need, a dual need, first there is the need of state to make it and second there is the need of propagandee to receive it. These two needs compliment and correspond to each other in the development of propaganda. Propaganda is an expression of modern society as a whole. 1.Part One: The State's Necessity

The State has the need to make propaganda to integrate citizens into its society, to disseminate information, and to increase participation and involvement of members of society. Sometimes the people want to take part in government affairs. However, the official leaders cannot disconnect themselves from what the people want. Being that the people in charge cant escape the people , bait must be presented to them. This acts as a disguise that must be there to hide what is really happening behind the scenes in the government . Citizens are aware that political decisions affect everybody and governments cannot govern without the support, presence, pressure, or knowledge of the people. Yet the people are incapable of making long term policy so opinion must be created to follow the government because the government cannot be led by opinion. All of this describes the "Mass-Government" relationship characterized by people demanding what has already been decided, in order to appear as though the government is actually caring about what the people need. The next part that the book discuss is psychological warfare. It is believed to be a peace policy that is used between nations as a form of aggression. This type of propaganda changes the public opinion of an opposing regime so that it can be in favor of there regime. 2. Part Two: The Individual’s Necessity The individual needs propaganda to gain satisfaction as a member of society. Individuals want to be informed and to participate in the decisions of the state. Propaganda is the outlet through which individuals obtain the satisfaction of having contributed to the state. It is a necessary instrument of a state or institution to spread information to members of the group or society. But for propaganda to succeed it must respond to a need on the individual’s part as well. The individual is by no means just an innocent victim of propaganda when in fact he provokes the psychological action of propaganda by not merely lending himself to it, but also from deriving satisfaction from it. It is strictly a sociological phenomenon, in the sense that it has its roots and reasons in the need of the group that will sustain it. The great role performed by propaganda is in its ability to give the people the involvement they crave or the illusion of it in order for the masses to be artificially satisfied. Individuals are faced with decisions which require a range of information that the individual does not and cannot have without propaganda. Thus, the individual is unable to accept that he cannot form opinion on his own and is caught between his desire and his inability. People are willing and likely to accept propaganda that allows them to artificially satisfy their desire to have an opinion by hiding their incompetence. The individual does not mind being given preconceived positions because otherwise he would realize that he does not understand the problems of the modern world. The individual would then realize that he "depends on situations of which he has no control" and have to face this reality. The individual cannot live in the state of this harsh reality so he derives satisfaction from the veil created by the ideology and the sense of values it provides. The individual need psychological and ideological reasons why he needs to be where he is and propaganda is the mechanism that the state uses for this very purpose. Chapter Four: Psychological Effects of Propaganda

The psychological effects of propaganda on an individual cannot be ignored. The individual undergoes profound changes while being propagandized mainly the diminishment of personal activity. "Propaganda furnishes objectives, organizes the traits of an individual into a system, and freezes them into a mold by standardizing current ideas, hardening the prevailing stereotypes, and furnishing thought patterns in all areas."[17] The individual is traumatized by the overwhelming force of propaganda that intensifies the prejudices and beliefs until eventually the individual has no control over his own impulses. It seeks to push the individual into the mass until his will fades entirely into that of the mass. Individuality is sacrificed for the greater cause of the nation by uniting him and blending him with others. Critical and personal judgment are subdued and replaced with ready-made attitudes and opinions. Discernment is made nearly impossible for the individual whose ability to judge is destroyed making him dependent on propaganda’s ready-made opinions from then on. The individual can no longer exercise his own judgment and becomes honed into what propaganda tells him. He no longer expresses himself but his group once he accepts public opinion as his own. The artificial, impersonal public opinion created by propaganda is absorbed by the individual and he becomes filled with its conviction. When he is fully integrated in the social group and can no longer distinguish between himself and society than he has reached total alienation. In this process, the individual’s personal inclinations lead to participation in the collective where he loses control and submits to external impulses. The individual is suppressed psychologically so that he can continue to live under the conditions in which society places him by providing an artificial and unreal reality that is the result of powerful propaganda. Chapter Five: The Socio-Political Effects

"In the nineteenth century, the problem of opinion formation through the expression of thought was essentially a problem of contacts between the State and the individual, and a problem of acquisition of freedom. But today, thanks to the mass media, the individual finds himself outside the battle that is now between the State and powerful groups. The freedom to express ideas is no longer at stake in this debate but it has been replaced by mastery and domination by the State or some powerful groups over the formation of opinion. The individual is not in the battle because he is the stake and the battle will determine what voice he will be permitted to hear and which words will have the power to obsess him."[18] 1.Part One: Propaganda and Ideology

An ideology provides society certain beliefs and no social group can exist without the foundation of these beliefs. Propaganda is the means by which an ideology can expand without force. An ideology is either fortified within a group or expanded beyond the borders of a group through propaganda. However, propaganda is less and less concerned with spreading the ideology nowadays as it is with becoming autonomous. The ideology is no longer the decisive factor of propaganda that must be obeyed by the propagandist. The propagandist cannot be constrained by the ideology of his State but must operate in service of the state and be able to manipulate the ideology as if it were an object. The ideology merely provides the content for the propagandist to build off since he is limited to what already is present within the group, nation, or society. The fundamental ideologies are nationalism, socialism, communism, and democracy. 2. Part Two: Effects on the Structure of Public Opinion Public opinion is an instrument of propaganda that is disseminated through the mass media of communication to the masses. While most people view the formation of public opinion as being shaped itself by interaction between different viewpoints on controversial questions, this is incorrect because public opinion is delineated by propaganda as a "truth" which is either believed or not believed. Public opinion ceases to be controversial and can no longer form itself except through channels of mass media. No opinion can be held until it is communicated to the masses through mass media. Propaganda uses public opinion to externalize inner opinions of the organization to the masses that eventually produces conformity.[19] 3. Part Three: Propaganda and Grouping In regards to propaganda, there are two groups: the groups that make propaganda and the groups that are subjected to propaganda. In Ellul's view, there is a "double foray on the part of propaganda that proves the excellence of one group and the evilness of another at the same time to create partitioning". This creates isolation between groups by promoting allegiance to the group one is in and suppressing conversation between groups. The more they listen to their propaganda the stronger their beliefs and the greater their justifications for their actions. Partitioning takes place on many different levels including class, religious, political, national and blocs of nations. A superior group is able to affect the lesser groups, however, groups that have an equal amount of influence will only separate further from one another in that a members allegiance to a group develops closed mindedness. Well-organized propaganda is able to work with different elements that exist within a nation such as religion, political parties, and labor groups. 4. Part Four: Propaganda and Democracy Since democracy depends on public opinion, it is clear that propaganda must be involved. The relationship between democracy and propaganda evidently presents a conflict between the principles of democracy and the processes of propaganda. The individual is viewed as the cornerstone of a democracy which is a form of government that is made "for the people and by the people". However, as discussed in early chapters Ellul described the masses are incapable of making long-term foreign policy and the government needs to make these decisions in a timely manner. This is where propaganda comes into play and projects an artificial reality to the masses to satisfy their need to participate in government while the decisions are really made behind the scenes. This was also describe earlier as the "mass-government" relationship. Democratic regimes develop propaganda in line with its myths and prejudices. Propaganda stresses the superiority of a democratic society while intensifying the prejudices between democratic and oppressive.

Major themes

Propaganda: The Formation of Men's Attitudes builds on prior notions of propaganda to demonstrate that while propaganda is psychological in nature it is just as much sociological in nature as well. Propaganda is not just embedded into the individual's psyche but also the cultural psyche. Propaganda works off the inner characteristics of both the individual and the society that the individual belongs. This thorough analysis made by Ellul illustrates that to downplay the importance of the sociological influences of propaganda to psychological ones is a dreadful error. Propaganda is more threatening when it begins to be recognized as sociological as well psychological in nature. Below are two major themes the first stressing the psychological aims of propaganda the second the sociological aims.

"The Lonely Crowd"

The term "lonely crowd" is used by Ellul to distinguish the two inseparable elements of propaganda, the individual and the masses, which must be addressed by the propagandist at the same time. As an isolated unit, the individual is of no interest to the propagandist unless he is reduced to an average. It is crucial that the individual is never considered as an individual but always in terms of what he has in common with others. The individual is included and integrated into the mass because the propagandist profits from the process of diffusion of emotions through the mass, and at the same time, from the pressures felt by an individual when in a group.[20]

In this setting, "the individual caught up in the mass", the individual's reactions are easier to provoke and psychic defenses are weakened. The individual must always be considered as a participant in a mass and similarly the mass must only be viewed as a crowd composed of individuals. When propaganda is addressed to the crowd, it must touch each individual in that crowd which is in fact nothing but assembled individuals. Conversely, the individual should not be viewed as alone as a listener, watcher, or reader because the individual is nevertheless part of an invisible crowd though he is actually alone. The most favorable moment to influence an individual is when he is alone in the mass, the structure of the mass is extremely profitable to the propagandist concerned with being effective.

Fundamental currents in society

"One cannot make just any propaganda any place for anybody."[21] While propaganda is focused on reaching the individual, it cannot only rely on building off what already exists in the individual. Propaganda must also attach itself to the pre-existing fundamental currents of the society it seeks to influence. The propagandist must know the current tendencies and the stereotypes among the public he is trying to reach. These are indicated by principal symbols of the culture the propagandist wishes to attack since these symbols express the attitudes of a particular culture. Individuals are part of a culture and are therefore psychologically shaped by that culture. The main task of propaganda is to utilize the conditioned symbols as transmitters of that culture to serve its purpose. Propaganda must be a reflection of the fundamental structures of society to be successful and not contradictory of existing opinions. A skillful propagandist does not try to change mass opinion or go against an accepted structure. Only a bad propagandist would make a direct attack on an established, reasoned, durable opinion, accepted cliché, or fixed pattern. "Each individual harbors a large number of stereotypes and established tendencies; from this arsenal the propagandist must select those easiest to mobilize, those which will give the greatest strength to the action he wants to precipitate."[22]

While propaganda cannot create something out of nothing, it does have the ability to build on the foundation already established. More importantly even though it does not create new material and is confined to what already exists, it is not necessarily powerless. "It can attack from the rear, war own slowly, provide new centers of interest, which cause the neglect of previously acquired positions; it can divert a prejudice; or it can elicit an action contrary to an opinion held by the individual without his being clearly aware of it."[23]

Propaganda can gradually undermine prejudices and images in order to weaken them. These fundamental currents in society create the perfect atmosphere for sociological propaganda which influences the individual through his customs and unconscious habits. Sociological propaganda is a phenomenon where a society tries to unify its members’ behavior according to a pattern. Essentially sociological propaganda is to increase conformity with the environment that is of a collective nature by developing compliance with or defense of the established order through long term penetration and progressive adaptation by using all social currents. The propaganda element is the way of life with which the individual is permeated and then the individual begins to express it in film, writing, or art without realizing it. This involuntary behavior creates an expansion of society through advertising, the movies, education, and magazines. "The entire group, consciously or not, expresses itself in this fashion; and to indicate, secondly that its influence aims much more at an entire style of life."[24] This type of propaganda is not deliberate but springs up spontaneously or unwittingly within a culture or nation. This propaganda reinforces the individual’s way of life and represents this way of life as best.

See also [edit] Brainwashing Conformity Ideology Indoctrination Media manipulation Mind control Propaganda Psychological manipulation Psychological warfare Social Influence Socially constructed reality

British propaganda is especially sophisticated and nasty. See In Foreign Events Coverage The Guardian Presstitutes Slip Beyond the Reach of Embarrassment

Anatomy of US sanctions against Russia

The USA administration, and especially neocons, entrenched in State Department, organized putsch in Kiev with the help of their European satellites. When the civil war started as the result of the putsch the USA introduced sanctions against Russia. See "Fuck the EU": State Department neocons show EU its real place

Tremendous pressure exerted on Russia by the West, largely intended to show the subjects of world politics undesirability of implementing an independent foreign policy. Washington and its satellites in Europe through sanctions are trying to demonstrate their ability to isolate the "offending" countries from the global economy and technical progress by controlling supplies of high technology equipment. However, analysis of the accusations against Russia suggests that both the USA Europe are dominated by neoliberals/neocons who themselves are divorced from the realities of the current processes and looks at the world through the eyes of the early 90th then neoliberalism enjoyed its triumphal march in Eastern Europe and xUSSR space.

After 2008  neoliberalism entered so called zombie stage. It is still very powerful and very dangerous, but ideology of neoliberalism, like ideology of Marxism before is now looks like  perishable goods with expired date of consumption. In no way it is not attractive anymore. Events like enforcing Greece debt slavery by Germany and France only increase the reaction of rejection. 

And that's despite all economic power the USA definitely possesses and success in implementing economic sanctions which drove the Russia GDP growth into negative rages presents huge challenge for the USA. One of the best option the USA elites are pushing is the limited war in Europe that can weaken both EU and Russia. So in a way the putsch in Kiev was anti-EU measure, as Victoria Nuland famous quote suggests.

Sanctions, as damaging  as they are, suggest that the empire lost diplomatic skills. And there is no question that  economic weapons are as close to the act of war as you can get.  See Cold War II. As Patrick Buchanan notes (ecnomicpolicyjournal.com, April 28, 2014):

"Mr. Obama is focused on isolating President Vladimir V. Putin's Russia by cutting off its economic and political ties to the outside world ... and effectively making it a pariah state."

So wrote Peter Baker in Sunday's New York Times. Yet if history is any guide, this "pariah policy," even if adopted, will not long endure.

Three years after Khrushchev sent tanks into Hungary, he
was touring the USA and celebrating with Ike the new "Spirit of Camp David."

Half a year after Khrushchev moved missiles into Cuba, JFK was talking detente is his famous speech at American University.

Three weeks after Moscow incited the Arabs in the Six-Day War, Lyndon Johnson was meeting with Premier Alexei Kosygin in New Jersey, where the "Spirit of Glassboro," was born.

So it went through the Cold War. Post-crises, U.S. presidents reached out to Soviet leaders. For they saw Russia as too large and too powerful to be isolated and ostracized like North Korea.

The sustained expansion of economic sanctions, especially  against the oil and gas sector and specific companies as well as limited access to credit resources indicate the seriousness of the Western establishment to deprive Russia of the economic growth and the ability to protect its own economic interests.



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[Sep 30, 2020] As the US pressures Russia to renegotiate the New START Treaty, it exposes its own unreliability as a negotiating partner by Scott Ritter

Sep 09, 2020 | www.rt.com

Scott Ritter

is a former US Marine Corps intelligence officer and author of ' SCORPION KING : America's Suicidal Embrace of Nuclear Weapons from FDR to Trump.' He served in the Soviet Union as an inspector implementing the INF Treaty, in General Schwarzkopf's staff during the Gulf War, and from 1991-1998 as a UN weapons inspector. Follow him on Twitter @RealScottRitter The US seeks to pressure Russia by threatening to reactivate nuclear capability mothballed under the New START treaty if Moscow refuses to renegotiate. All it will accomplish by this is prove it habitually cheats on arms control.

According to Politico, "The Trump administration has asked the military to assess how quickly it could pull nuclear weapons out of storage and load them onto bombers and submarines" when the New START treaty limiting the size of the US and Russian strategic nuclear arsenals expires in February. Politico sources its story "to three people familiar with the discussions." According to these sources, the request was made to the US Strategic Command as "part of a strategy to pressure Moscow into renegotiating the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty before the US presidential election."

What is curious about this report is that US Strategic Command already knows the answer to the request. To meet the level of warhead reductions mandated under the treaty, the US has decreased the number of warheads carried on the Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) from three to one, and on its Trident D-5 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) from up to 14 to around 5 or 6.

READ MORE US quitting ABM pact forced Moscow to turn to advanced hypersonic systems & now it has weapons no one else does - Putin US quitting ABM pact forced Moscow to turn to advanced hypersonic systems & now it has weapons no one else does - Putin

The deactivated warheads were reclassified as either active or inactive. Active warheads are kept fully assembled and subjected to the same level of maintenance and upgrades as their operational counterparts, and can be reactivated in accordance with guidelines already established by US Strategic Command. Inactive warheads have been partially disassembled, and their reactivation would take longer than for their active counterparts, but is similarly regulated by US Strategic Command directives. Moreover, the US regularly conducts tests where it reconverts the Minuteman III ICBM to a three-warhead configuration to practice for the very activities suggested in the Politico article. The timelines associated with this reconversion are well known to US Strategic Command. It is not publicly known whether the US Navy conducts similar re-conversion flight tests of its Trident D-5 SLBMs.

One aspect of this request that, if it were implemented, would fall outside the existing reactivation guidelines set by US Strategic Command is if the US were to reconvert its fleet of Trident ballistic missile submarines from its current configuration under New START to one where no restrictions applied. This possibility raises some interesting questions about US compliance with New START.

According to Section 1 , paragraph 3 in Part Three of the Protocol to the treaty,

"If an ICBM launcher, SLBM launcher, or heavy bomber is converted by rendering it incapable of employing ICBMs, SLBMs, or nuclear armaments, so that the other Party can confirm the results of the conversion, such a converted strategic offensive arm shall cease to be subject to the aggregate numbers provided for in Article II of the Treaty and may be used for purposes not inconsistent with the Treaty."

To meet its obligations under New START, the US converted four SLBM launchers on each of its 14 Trident ballistic missile submarines – a total of 56 – to remove them from the permitted number of launchers. This conversion was done by removing the gas generators of the ejecting mechanism from the launch tube and bolting the tube covers shut.

On February 27, 2018, the Russian Foreign Ministry protested the American actions, noting that, in regard to the Trident conversions, they were "converted in such a way that the Russian Federation cannot confirm that these strategic arms have been rendered incapable of employing SLBMs."

The Russians were concerned that the Trident SLBM conversions were not irreversible, as required under the terms of the treaty, and that the 56 launchers listed as having been "rendered incapable of employing SLBMs" should rather have been categorized as "non-deployed launchers" and not excluded from the total aggregate count. To put it bluntly, the Russians were accusing the United States of cheating on the New START Treaty.

ALSO ON RT.COM US envoy says Russia must agree to arms control deal with no NATO scaleback, or else it's 'happy to modernize nukes without START'

If true, the threat made by Marshall Billingslea in his interview with the Russian Kommersant paper on September 21 to "reconvert our weapons" , if applied to the Trident ballistic missile submarine launch tubes, would not only confirm the Russian suspicions, but certify the US as an untrustworthy negotiating partner in any future arms control negotiations, either with Russia or China.

Washington already has one strike against it in this regard: its contention that the Mk 41 launcher used on the Aegis Ashore anti-ballistic missile system could not be used as a cruise missile launcher, and, as such, did not constitute a violation of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. This was shown to be a lie when, less than a month after the US withdrew from the INF Treaty, it conducted a flight test of a cruise missile fired from the same Mk 41 launcher .

If the Politico reporting is accurate, the US military has been ordered to carry out an exercise that is redundant insofar as the data is already known, and which does nothing to further US strategic capabilities. Moreover, if the US plans on increasing its SLBM launch capability by reactivating the 56 SLBM launchers ostensibly rendered inoperable under New START, Marshall Billingslea would be undermining his own stated objective of trying to pressure Russia back to the negotiating table before the November 2020 presidential election. After all, who in their right mind would be willing to negotiate with a proven cheater?

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

[Sep 29, 2020] Tomorrow's Arctic: Theatre of War or Cooperation? The Real Story Behind the Alaska Purchase

Sep 29, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

ET AL September 28, 2020 at 11:25 am

Strategic-Culture.org : Tomorrow's Arctic: Theatre of War or Cooperation? The Real Story Behind the Alaska Purchase
https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2020/05/19/tomorrows-arctic-theatre-of-war-or-cooperation-the-real-story-behind-the-alaska-purchase/

Matthew Ehret
May 19, 2020

Today, the Arctic has increasingly become identified as a domain of great prosperity and cooperation amongst world civilizations on the one side and a domain of confrontation and war on the other.

In 2007, the Russian government first voiced its support for the construction of the Bering Strait rail tunnel connecting the Americas with the Eurasian continent- a policy which has taken on new life in 2020 as Putin's Great Arctic Development strategy has wedded itself to the northern extension of the Belt and Road Initiative (dubbed the Polar Silk Road). In 2011, the Russian government re-stated its pledge to build the $64 billion project .
####

Plenty more at the link.

Full circle?

I found this via the more current Vinyard the Saker Piece by the same author: Trump's Surprising Alaska-Canada Rail Announcement: Might America Join the Polar Silk Road?
http://thesaker.is/trumps-surprising-alaska-canada-rail-announcement-might-america-join-the-polar-silk-road/

By Matthew Ehret for the Saker Blog

On September 26, President Trump announced that a long-overdue project would receive Federal support which involves connecting Alaska for the first time with Canada and the lower 48 states via a 2570 km railway.

In his Tweet announcing the project, Trump said:
####

I'd never read about the sale of Alaska to America by Russia in any detail before but just by looking at the map it was clear that it made sense. Indefensible against a rapidly growing country, so sell early for a good price or lose it and get nothing.

As for Ehret's hypothesis, we know that t-Rump sees things in a deal oriented way and not simply 'You must be destroyed (TM)' way, though his methods of reaching such deals 'Maximum Pressure (TM)' are none too bright and result in less than a normally negotiated deal. But, if we look at the ends rather than the means, improving trade links is surely to America's (and others) advantage.

One thing that does strike me from the maps of the proposed increased US-Asia links is that having those function normally is not compatible with the current strategic goal of trying to contain China. So, what is the point of the US Pacific Fleet? Just Free-Dumb of Navigation (FONOPS) cruises for pensioners?

[Sep 29, 2020] This nasty neocon Rachel MadCow

Notable quotes:
"... The DemoRats have never been a party dedicated to peace; the only ones thinking that are the walking bong-holes who assuage their cognitive dissonance by telling themselves that. Both the demorats and their willing accomplices 'across the aisle' have led us into constant war for nearly eight decades. Lilliputian Big enders and Little enders all. ..."
"... Screw the war mongers and the MIC. ..."
"... If you read the article, it's obvious that [neo]liberals/whores are the apogee of hypocrisy. ..."
"... Perpetual war is about $$$. It knows no party. Never has and never will. ..."
"... Yup. It's always about the money. ..."
Jan 13, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com
True Blue , 1 hour ago link

Feral, yes; rabid, absolutely; smart... not so much. Why is anyone surprised?

The DemoRats have never been a party dedicated to peace; the only ones thinking that are the walking bong-holes who assuage their cognitive dissonance by telling themselves that. Both the demorats and their willing accomplices 'across the aisle' have led us into constant war for nearly eight decades. Lilliputian Big enders and Little enders all.

AI Agent , 1 hour ago link

She's a good lying propagandist... but she's not brilliant. Smart? maybe. Brilliant? Cow flop has more shine than Madcow.

desertboy , 36 minutes ago link

Maybe he meant "brilliant manipulator" -- sometimes they have meant the same thing.

Throat-warbler Mangrove , 1 hour ago link

Get.Us (a). Out.Now

Screw the war mongers and the MIC.

BlackChicken , 1 hour ago link

If you read the article, it's obvious that [neo]liberals/whores are the apogee of hypocrisy.

richardsimmonsoftrout , 1 hour ago link

"they're likely to emerge from 2020 with not only smeared consciences, but four more years in the opposition."

"Smeared consciences"... that's rich, pretty sure the psychopaths don't have a conscience.

navy62802 , 1 hour ago link

Perpetual war is about $$$. It knows no party. Never has and never will.

holdbuysell , 1 hour ago link

Yup. It's always about the money. As Fitts would say, that screeching you hear is the cash flow drying up for the rentiers. The murdering of women and children be damned. Hillary's demonic cackle is but the grotesque cherry on top: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fgcd1ghag5Y

[Sep 29, 2020] Perhaps the Skripals 'disappeared' because the British government was unsure how to present them after a supposedly-deadly poisoning attempt which they plainly are said to have survived.

Sep 29, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

MARK CHAPMAN September 28, 2020 at 4:48 am

Yes, those are all good and sound arguments. The point I was trying to make, though, is that American toxicologists and field experts are astounded that anyone might survive exposure to VX; it is unaccountable not only that they could be alive, but that there is not a trail of death following the assassins as well until it kills them, too. But nobody seems surprised for Navalny to make a complete recovery and be sitting up in bed making demands and strolling around the stairwells, after exposure to a much more toxic agent that should have killed him, while nobody noticed anyone sneaking into his room dressed in a full hazmat suit with breathing apparatus and apparently others could come and go from the scene of the alleged exposure with no protection.

Perhaps the Skripals 'disappeared' because the British government was unsure how to present them after a supposedly-deadly poisoning attempt which they plainly are said to have survived. Perhaps also it is the judgment of similar authorities that the public will accept the dichotomy without demur; hence, the agent can still be nefarious beyond belief because it is so insidious and deadly, but Navalny can be alive and making noise after exposure to it.

MARK CHAPMAN September 27, 2020 at 6:26 pm

I'd like to look at the Navalny 'poisoning" from a slightly different angle, one which I think bears scrutiny. I've said several times that nobody – to the best of my knowledge – has ever survived poisoning by VX. But that's not quite accurate – the two women who thrust what was always believed to be VX in some form into the face of Kim Jong Nam (Kim Jong-Un's half-brother) at an airport in Kuala Lumpur killed him stone dead. But they themselves apparently survived with no ill effects except that one of them allegedly may have vomited.

The major difference in the way the stories are treated, then, is the incredulity with which the apparent survival of the alleged poisoners is regarded by the western press. Consider;

An amount of VX, we are told, that weighs as much as two pennies would kill 500 people. I assume that's what he meant, as he is strikingly un-eloquent for a scientist and the 'penny' is not a weight of measure. Is that a British penny, or an American one? Big difference in weight.

''The other chemical agents like sarin, tabun, those kinds of things, they're way below this. They're toxic, yes, but this is the king,'' said John Trestrail, a U.S. forensic toxicologist who has examined more than 1,000 poisoning crimes.

He said an amount of VX weighing two pennies could kill 500 people through skin exposure. It's also hard to acquire and would likely have come from a chemical weapons laboratory, making it more likely that the attack was executed by a government."

Yes, you read that right – VX is the King of vicious toxicological agents. Except for Novichok, which is ten times as deadly, and the would-be killers dusted Navalny's bottle with enough of it that the bottle was liberally covered with the dust, and his clothes apparently were as well, or so Team Navalny suspects. Say – that's a handy little timeline right there, innit? When did Navalny put those clothes on? Presumably he had a shower before going to bed; did he dress in fresh clothes before leaving for the airport, or wear the same stuff from the day before? Either way, the poisoner must have accessed Navalny's room between the time he got up and the time the plane took off – if he still had Novichok on his clothes from the day before, he'd be dead, plus would have contaminated God knows how many surfaces.

Anyway, remember – Novichok is ten times as deadly as the King of nerve agents, VX. But it has killed – according to western yarns – only one of six people exposed to it; Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Detective Nick Bailey, Navalny and Charles Rowley all survived and have apparently achieved full recovery, Navalny in only a week after emerging from an alleged coma.

Western incredulity? None. Nothing to see here, old chap.

Listen to the awful consequences of poisoning with VX, and remember the assassins only pushed some quantity of VX into Kim Jong-Nam's face; a second's contact, them they ran away, not wearing gloves or any protective gear at all.

"VX is an amber-colored, tasteless, odorless chemical weapon first produced in the 1950s. When inhaled or absorbed through the skin, it disrupts the nervous system and causes constriction and increased secretions in the throat, leading to difficulty breathing. Fluids pour from the body, including sweat, spontaneous urination and defecation, often followed by convulsions, paralysis and death. Kim Jong Nam sought help at the airport clinic and died en route to a hospital within two hours of being attacked, police said."

I don't think anyone has reported what Navalny was roaring and screaming, but perhaps it was"Get back!!! I'm shitting myself!! Jesus, I can't stop pissing!!! Help me!!" although you would think if his symptoms included spontaneous defecation and urination, someone would have said – it could be important. Different agent, I know, but the symptoms of nerve-agent poisoning are quite similar across the type. Navalny's symptoms were nothing like nerve-agent poisoning, no matter how energetically the defector Mirzayanov and his fan club try to backstop Navalny's story. The intense sweating and the obvious gross irritation of the mucous membranes would have been unmistakable to the doctors in Omsk, considering Navalny had already passed the onset of whatever symptoms he did have and was unconscious.

Kim Jong-Nam died within two hours of being attacked with a nerve agent ten times less toxic than Novichok. Navalny was definitely poisoned with a substance ten times more toxic than VX, according to the Germans and the French and whoever else swears to that ludicrous story, but was to all appearances normal at least an hour after having been poisoned, since he showed no symptoms until at least 40 minutes after the plane took off with no obvious GRU agents on board, and hung around the airport before the flight was called at least long enough to drink a cup of tea, plus however long it took for him to get from the hotel to the airport.

"The two women -- one Vietnamese, one Indonesian -- recorded on surveillance cameras thrusting a substance into Kim Jong Nam's face as he was about to check in for a flight home to Macau, apparently did not suffer serious health problems. Malaysian police have said they were not wearing gloves or protective gear and that they washed their hands afterward as they were trained to do. However, authorities said Friday that one of them vomited afterward.

Both have been arrested along with another man. Authorities are also seeking several others, including an employee of North Korea's state-owned airline, Air Koryo.

''If they used their bare hands, there's just no possible way that they would have exposed him to VX unless they took some sort of precaution,'' Goldberger said. ''The only precaution I know of would be administration of the antidote before this went down.''

Perhaps that's it; perhaps immediately after swigging from his water-bottle – which he left in the hotel room, obviously – Navalny rang room service for some Novichok antidote. Just in case. Can't be too careful, when you are the main opposition leader.

"No areas were cordoned off and protective measures were not taken. When asked about it a day after the attack, airport spokesman Shah Rahim said there was no risk to travelers and the airport was regularly and properly cleaned. But officials announced Friday that the facility would be decontaminated.

''It's as persistent as motor oil. It's going to stay there for a long time. A long time, which means anyone coming in contact with this could be intoxicated from it,'' Trestrail said. ''If this truly is VX, they ought to be calling in a hazmat team and looking at any place these women or the victim traveled after the exposure.''

A hazmat team, and looking at any place the assassin or anyone potentially exposed might have traveled. For an agent ten times less toxic than Novichok.

https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2017/02/24/banned-chemical-weapon-potent-killer-that-lingers/5bTFjBz6tJVouk4tnyaERK/story.html

[Sep 29, 2020] Any rich Russian, Iranian, Chinese at this point who persists in keeping money abroad really are fools.

Sep 29, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

JAMES LAKE September 21, 2020 at 4:12 am

Any rich Russian, Iranian, Chinese at this point who persists in keeping money abroad – really are fools.

ET AL September 20, 2020 at 12:56 pm

FIGHT! Via MoonofAlabama.org :*

Matt Taibbi is a cancel culture hypocrite
https://yasha.substack.com/p/matt-taibbi-is-a-cancel-culture-hypocrite-b78

Here's what Matt hopes you don't remember: When the cancel mob came for him, he was the "upper class Twitter Robespierre" ratting on his colleagues.

Yasha Levine Sep 18

Between the pandemic, the economic collapse, the fires and the toxic fumes, and the fact that I'm currently fighting an eviction, I know there are much more pressing issues to get worked up about these days. But as someone who got his start in journalism at The eXile and who has been on the receiving end of our "cancel culture" so many times I lost count, I can't let it go.
####

Plenty more at the link.

There's very much 'don't put one's head above the parapet unnecessarily' about all this so no wonder Levine feels betrayed. Yes, people change and see things differently later in life and deal with it in their own ways. Maybe we all live too long .

The eXile also reflected closely what I myself saw and heard first hand while I was studying in Russia in the mid-1990s, that it bore no resemblance to what the western journalists were reporting. This on the back of all their lies and willful ignorance during the break up of Yugoslavia and the subsequent civil wars. It put me off being a journalist (which was a good thing)!

There's other interesting stuff including by Anatole Lieven in Prospect Magazine which is stuff familiar and oft discussed by us already.

* https://www.moonofalabama.org/2020/09/the-moa-week-in-review-open-thread-2020-75.html#more

MOSCOWEXILE September 20, 2020 at 10:40 pm

BBC

Huge banking scandal in London.

Squeaky clean, transparent, honest, true and trusted Western way of doing business -- European values and all that -- exposed as a crock of shite:

FinCEN Files: HSBC moved Ponzi scheme millions despite warning
By FinCEN Files reporting team
BBC Panorama
20 September 2020

HSBC allowed fraudsters to transfer millions of dollars around the world even after it had learned of their scam, leaked secret files show.

Britain's biggest bank moved the money through its US business to HSBC accounts in Hong Kong in 2013 and 2014.

Its role in the $80m (£62m) fraud is detailed in a leak of documents – banks' "suspicious activity reports" – that have been called the FinCEN Files.

HSBC says it has always met its legal duties on reporting such activity.

Why is it that the "Free World" has so many corrupt institutions, especially when it comes to dealing with loadsa lolly?

The West has so many internal financial traitors, who, essentially, are traitors and deceivers to whole populations of Western free society, and who make it too easy for enemies of the "Free World" to use the blatant dishonesty and hypocrisy of Western financial institutions as a glaring example of Western perfidy.

95% of Russians think that all Western financiers are thieves. Just walk around any hell hole of a Russian shitsville town out in the sticks and you will find that to be true!

And get this!

Clearly distraught about the enormity of this financial swindle perpetrated by HSBC, the BBC feels it duty bound to point out a Putin connection with this ginormous financial scam:

FinCEN Files: Sanctioned Putin associate 'laundered millions' through Barclays
By FinCEN Files reporting team
BBC Panorama
20 September 2020

Note the headline!

He definitely did it! Past tense: completed in the past -- "laundered"

However, in the first line of the body of the article, enter the modal auxiliary verb "may" in order to indicate probability, and slight probability at that:

One of Vladimir Putin's closest friends may have used Barclays Bank in London to launder money and dodge sanctions, leaked documents suggest.

And Putin has known this bloke since childhood!

I rest my case, m'lud!

MOSCOWEXILE September 21, 2020 at 4:43 am

And Deutsche Bank was well in on the money laundering scam as well:

FinCEN Files: Deutsche Bank tops list of suspicious transactions

Leaked documents shed a light on Deutsche Bank's central role in facilitating financial transactions deemed suspicious. Many of these could have enabled the circumvention of sanctions on Iran and Russia.

https://p.dw.com/p/3ilHd

European values.

MARK CHAPMAN September 21, 2020 at 8:44 am

He was probably saving up to buy his closest friend another palace. Now Putin will have him killed. Shame. Well, nothing lasts forever.

MOSCOWEXILE September 21, 2020 at 12:16 am

Why are there so many corrupt Russian businessmen and politicians?

Russia has so many corrupt public figures that it makes too easy for Russia's enemies to use them against Russia.

95% of Europeans think all Russians are corrupt!

RIA NOVOSTI

Опубликованы данные финразведки о счетах россиян в американских банках
08:46 21.09.2020 (обновлено: 09:04 21.09.2020)

Financial intelligence data about the accounts of Russians in American banks has been published
08:46 21.09.2020 (updated: 09:04 21.09.2020)

MOSCOW, September 21 – RIA Novosti. Cassandra, an international consortium of investigative journalists, has released classified data from the US Treasury Department for Combating Financial Crimes (FinCEN) regarding suspicious banking transactions.

According to media reports, the beneficiaries of some transactions are, amongst others, Russian politicians and businessmen.

The consortium declined to comment on how it got the secret documents. At the same time, the investigators themselves noted that suspicious transactions do not always indicate a violation of the law.

An "international consortium", eh?

No explanation of how the data was acquired, eh?

And in any case, big transfers of dough don't necessarily mean that such transfers are illegal.

So why make an issue out of it?

I wonder if this International Consortium has ever taken a peek at poroshenko's money transactions and offshore subterfuges?

Oh look!

The address of "Cassandra":

1710 Rhode Island Ave NW | 11th floor
Washington DC 20036 USA

See: International Consortium of Investigative Journalists

MOSCOWEXILE September 21, 2020 at 12:43 am

As regards Putin's pal since childhood who "may have used Barclays Bank in London to launder money and dodge sanctions", Vedomosti reports this morning:

14 минут назад
Ротенберг назвал бредом данные СМИ о транзакциях через лондонский банк

14 minutes ago
Rotenberg has called the media data on transactions through a London bank nonsense

Aha! A denial from a Russian -- and a Russian 4×2 to boot!

That can only mean he is guilty as accused.

The data on suspicious transactions carried out by Russian businessmen Arkady and Boris Rotenberg through the London bank Barclays is nothing more than nonsense, RBC reports with reference to a representative of Arkady Rotenberg.

"The data on suspicious transactions that Russian businessmen Arkady and Boris Rotenberg carried out through the London bank Barclays, published by the international investigative project Cassandra, is nothing more than delusion", the message says. Representatives of other members of the Rotenberg family said that they did not settle through British banks and did not directly or indirectly own Ayrton, which is mentioned in the Cassandra report, the newspaper reports.

Earlier, experts of the international investigation project "Cassandra" published a report on the results of a study of the documents of the US financial intelligence (FinCEN) that came at their disposal. Amongst the financial transactions that the banks reporting to FinCEN found suspicious, in particular, were those of Ayrton Development Limited. The company, according to the BBC, was deemed by Barclays to be owned by the sanctioned Arkady Rotenberg. According to the report, 26 transactions carried out in the interests of the Rotenbergs were classified as suspicious.

Leningrader Arkady Rotenberg was a sambo pal of Putin. He has clearly enjoyed considerable enrichment during the Putin tyranny.

In 2000, the Evil One created Rosspirtprom, a state-owned enterprise controlling 30% of Russia's vodka market, and put Rotenberg in control.

In 2001, Rotenberg and his brother founded the SMP bank, which operates in 40 Russian cities with over 100 branches, more than half of them in the Moscow area. SMP oversees the operation of more than 900 ATM-machines. SMP bank also became a leading large-diameter gas pipe supplier.

In 2007, Gazprom rejected an earlier plan to build a 350-mile pipeline and instead paid Rotenberg $45 billion to lay a 1,500 mile pipeline to the Arctic Circle.

O'Bummer signed an executive order instructing his government to impose sanctions on the Rotenberg brothers and other close friends of President Putin because of the Russian "annexation" of the Crimea.

For all his wealth, though, Arkady Rotenberg is not that smart at everything he does: In 2005, Rotenberg married his second wife Natalia Rotenberg, who is about 30 years his junior. Their two children, Varvara and Arkady, live in the United Kingdom with Natalia. They divorced in 2015 in the U.K. While the financial details of the divorce are private, the agreement includes division of the use of a £35 million Surrey mansion and a £8 million apartment in London. The couple's lawyers obtained a secrecy order preventing media in the U.K. from reporting on the divorce, but the order was overturned on appeal.

MARK CHAPMAN September 21, 2020 at 8:51 am

That time it was your fault. You used the same code to close your italics as you did to open them, with no slash.

MOSCOWEXILE September 21, 2020 at 1:38 am

Strange reaction indeed:

And only then, after having assured everyone and everything that the dose of the terrible poison Novichok was received precisely at home, Mr. Navalny, a dissenting person, was for some reason not at all afraid of this "irrefutable fact", and barely having opened his eyelids from a cloudy "comatose" slumber, was already prepared -- almost in his hospital robe -- to rush back.

To Moscow.

His home country.

Where allegedly, he was almost wiped off the face of the earth by "insidious poison murderers".

All part of the Bullshitter's repertoire.

source

MARK CHAPMAN September 21, 2020 at 8:54 am

Mercy, what a hero. Fair inspires me, he does.

[Sep 29, 2020] This is a threat? Washington is considering closing its embassy in Iraq

Sep 29, 2020 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

PATIENT OBSERVER September 28, 2020 at 4:33 am

This is a threat?

https://www.rt.com/usa/501883-iraq-embassy-baghdad-closure-attacks/

Washington is considering closing its embassy in Iraq, nine months after the US killing of an Iranian general on Iraqi soil led to protests over what Baghdad called a "violation" of its sovereignty, according to reports.

Multiple media outlets, including the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post and Sky News, reported on Sunday that US officials told their Iraqi counterparts that Washington will shut down its operations unless there is an end to rocket attacks on the embassy, which is located in the heavily-fortified Green Zone in Baghdad.

Sounds more like a possible victory for Iraq and its people. I suspect that there is much more to the story and the US is pre-emptively seeking a face-saving exit excuse if it were to come to that.

However, it would be extremely unlikely for the US to abandon the embassy given that it serves as the headquarters for numerous nefarious operations in Iraq and Iran

ET AL September 28, 2020 at 6:11 am

The claim that I have read is that this is in response to the USA's assassination of General Solemani in Lebanon. More precisely the i-Ranian strategy is not per se to cause American casualties but carry out sustained attacks via proxies on American interest in i-Rack, i.e. psychological pressure, cost etc. the ultimate goal being the USA leaving i-Rack as a suitable price for the assassination.I

I've also read (Vinyard the Saker?)that the USA has so far closed some of its smaller and less defensible outposts but concentrated what remains in fewer better defended bases. The USA does not want to leave i-Rack militarily and will hang on until it is out of options. The US embassy leaving i-Rack will not be good enough for i-Ran, but maybe this is the beginning of some kind of behind the scenes bargaining, though this is hard to believe considering the US is still pushing for a gulf coalition (WAR!) against i-Ran as well as polically neutralizing any potential spoiler countries. Also the embassay was built at quite a significant cost $750 billion.* So, you are right PO, this is bluff by the big puff Plumpeo.

i-Rack has also being trying to get rid of American military presence even though they have bought F-16IQs from Washington but the latter is using the same figleaf excuse as in Syria that they are 'fighting terrorists.'

* https://www.businessinsider.com/750-million-united-states-embassy-iraq-baghdad-2013-3

ET AL September 28, 2020 at 6:18 am

$750 million. Duh!

JRKRIDEAU September 28, 2020 at 6:47 am

$750 million. Duh
Given standard US contracting over-runs I was willg to believe "billions". The surprising thing is that it got built.

MARK CHAPMAN September 28, 2020 at 3:12 pm

The USA will never abandon its crown jewel in Iraq, and it would make little practical difference anyway, as it lies entirely within the American 'Green Zone', and they will surely not abandon that.

"But the location of the compound is well known in Baghdad anyway, where for several years it has been marked by large construction cranes and all-night work lights easily visible from the embattled neighborhoods across the river. It is reasonable to assume that insurgents will soon sit in the privacy of rooms overlooking the site, and use cell phones or radios to adjust the rocket and mortar fire of their companions. Meanwhile, however, they seem to have held off, lobbing most of their ordnance elsewhere into the Green Zone, as if reluctant to slow the completion of such an enticing target."

https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2007/11/langewiesche200711

The Baghdad Embassy is the USA's most-expensive embassy in the world, and it costs far more to run it each year than the cost of building it, in excess of a Billion dollars a year. What America might do, and what Iraq does fear, is send its diplomats home for awhile, and use it as an excuse to open a military operation in Iraq against what it terms Iran-aligned militias.

[Sep 28, 2020] "Then there are the Chinese. OK, they really are communists, but who is it that has bought into the nonsense about them oppressing poor, innocent, religious head choppers?

Sep 28, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

One Too Many | Aug 9 2020 0:42 utc | 46

William Gruff , Aug 8 2020 23:50 utc | 40

"Then there are the Chinese. OK, they really are communists, but who is it that has bought into the nonsense about them oppressing poor, innocent, religious head choppers? Who cares even if those lies were true? Yep, that's millennial morons."

Actually it was the USG through funding of various think tanks and NGOs that started the whole fiasco with the MSM pushing the narrative. You know people with power in established organizations, who tend to be much older. I wouldn't blame the people at the bottom so much for the decisions made at the top.

[Sep 28, 2020] The great Orwellian hypocrisy of America's pants-wetting complaints that other countries are meddling in America's (fake) democracy is that the United States itself is guilty of regime changing, balkanizing, and colonizing scores of foreign nations dating back over a century to the USA's regime change and eventual colonization of the Hawaiian Kingdom.

Notable quotes:
"... We have no evidence, but don't forget, they are evil and wouldn't hesitate to do it! ..."
Sep 28, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

ak74 , Aug 10 2020 6:55 utc | 71

"The statement then claims:

Ahead of the 2020 U.S. elections, foreign states will continue to use covert and overt influence measures in their attempts to sway U.S. voters' preferences and perspectives, shift U.S. policies, increase discord in the United States, and undermine the American people's confidence in our democratic process."

What America is yet again conniving to do is to discredit any domestic political dissent against the fraud of "American Democracy" by connecting this dissent to those nations that are the latest targets of America's Two Minutes of Hate campaign.

This is a standard American tactic that the USA always resorts to when it fears its own citizens are starting to question the fairy tale of American "Democracy and Freedom." Thus, during the Cold War, the USA even to discredit some elements of the Civil Rights movement as being assets of the Soviet Union.

The great Orwellian hypocrisy of America's pants-wetting complaints that other countries are meddling in America's (fake) democracy is that the United States itself is guilty of regime changing, balkanizing, and colonizing scores of foreign nations dating back over a century to the USA's regime change and eventual colonization of the Hawaiian Kingdom.

Bottom Line: America needs to drink a big up of Shut the F*ck Up with its pathetic Pity Party whining about foreigners trying to influence its bogus democracy.

This tired psyops is pathetic.

Overthrow: America's Century of Regime Change from Hawaii to Iraq
https://books.google.com/books/about/Overthrow.html?id=Q3o2BaNiJksC

Killing Hope
U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II
https://williamblum.org/books/killing-hope

padre , Aug 10 2020 15:12 utc | 74

We have no evidence, but don't forget, they are evil and wouldn't hesitate to do it!

[Sep 28, 2020] From Conflict to Crisis- The Danger of U.S. Actions by Jeanne M. Haskin

Sep 28, 2020 | www.amazon.com

In the United States, a great deal of study and energy goes into promoting respect for democracy, not just to keep it alive here but also to spread it around the world. It embraces the will of the majority, whether or not its main beneficiaries have more resources than other citizens do, as shown by the election of President Obama, who promised hope and change for the suffering majority, but did not sit long in office before being subjected to an economic vote of no-confidence.

Those who claim we run a plutocracy (government for the rich by the rich) -- or that we're victims of a conspiracy contrived by a shadow government -- are right while being wrong.

Our government is beyond the reach of ordinary American citizens in terms of economic power. However, the creation of a system to keep the majority of the populace at the losing end of a structure which neither promised nor delivered a state of financial equality was a predictable extension of the economic system the U.S. government was formed to protect.

... .... ...

Forty years of Cold War and the ultimate realization that abuse of the communist system and a hierarchy of privilege proved that system to be vulnerable to selfishness -- in common with the triumphant capitalist countries.

Because any desired outcome can be written into an equation to exclude unwanted facts or inputs by holding some things constant while applying chosen variables that may not hold true under every historical circumstance, it's considered "falsifiable" and therefore "scientific." But only if it appeals to the right people and justifies a given political need will it become sacrosanct (until the next round of "progress").

.... .... ...

Abusive Self- Interest

In 1764, twenty- five years before the embrace of Madame Guillotine (when heads rolled literally to put the fear of the mob into politics), contempt for the filth and poverty in which the French commoners lived while the nobility gorged on luxury goods showed how arrogant they were, not just in confidence that their offices of entitlement were beyond reproach and unassailable, but that mockery and insult in the face of deliberate deprivation would be borne with obedience and humility.

It certainly affected Smith's outlook, since he wrote The Wealth of Nations with a focus on self- interest rather than moral sentiments. And while this may be purely pragmatic, based on what

he witnessed, he also wrote about the potential for self- interest to become abusive, both in collusion with individuals and when combined with the power of government. Business interests could form cabals (groups of conspirators, plotting public harm) or monopolies (organizations with exclusive market control) to fix prices at their highest levels. A true laissez- faire economy would provide every incentive to conspire against consumers and attempt to influence budgets and legislation.

Smith's assertion that self- interest leads producers to favor domestic industry must also be understood in the context of the period. While it's true that the Enlightenment was a movement of rational philosophy radically opposed to secrecy, it's important to understand that this had to be done respectfully , insofar as all arguments were intended to impress the monarchy under circumstances where the king believed himself God- appointed and infallible, no matter his past or present policies, and matters were handled with delicacy. Yet, Smith's arguments are clear enough (and certainly courageous enough) to be understood in laymen's terms.

In an era when the very industry he's observing has been fostered by tariffs, monopolies, labor controls, and materials extracted from colonies, he did his best to balance observation with what he thought was best for society. It's not his fault we pick and choose our recipes for what we do and don't believe or where we think Smith might have gone had he been alive today.


The New Double Standard

The only practical way to resolve the contradiction between the existing beneficiaries of state favoritism in this period and Smith's aversion to it is to observe that the means to prevent competition and interference with the transition from one mode of commerce to another that enhances the strength of the favored or provides a new means to grow their wealth is to close the door of government intervention behind them and burn any bridges to it.

In psychological terms, the practice of "negative attribution" is to assume that identical behavior is justifiable for oneself but not another. It may not be inconsistent with a system of economics founded on self- interest, but it naturally begs a justification as to why it rules out everyone else's self- interest. The beauty of this system is that it will always have the same answer.

You may have guessed it.

Progress.

Reallocation of Assets

It was always understood that capitalism produces winners and losers. The art of economizing is to gain maximum benefit for minimum expenditure, which generally translates to asset consolidation and does not necessarily mean there is minimum sacrifice. There's an opportunity cost for everything, whether it's human, financial, environmental, or material. But the most important tenet of free market capitalism is that asset redistribution requires the U. S. government to go to DEFCON 1, unless assets are being reallocated for "higher productivity," in which case the entire universe is saved from the indefensible sin of lost opportunity.

Private property is sacred -- up until an individual decides he can make more productive use of it and appeals to the courts for seizure under eminent domain or until the government decides it will increase national growth if owned by some other person or entity. In like manner, corporations can suffer hostile takeovers, just as deregulation facilitates predatory market behavior and cutthroat competition promotes an efficiency orientation that means fewer jobs and lower incomes, which result in private losses.

In the varying range of causes underlying the loss of assets, the common threat is progress -- the "civilized" justification for depriving some other person or entity of their right to own property, presumably earned by the sweat of their brow, except their sweat doesn't have the same champion as someone who can wring more profit from it. The official explanation is that the government manages the "scarcity" of resources to benefit the world. This is also how we justify war, aggression, and genocide, though we don't always admit to that unless we mean to avoid it.


Perfectly Rational Genocide

History cooperates with the definition of Enlightenment if we imagine that thoughtfulness has something to do with genocide. In the context of American heritage, it has meant that when someone stands in the way of progress, his or her resources are "reallocated" to serve the pursuit of maximum profit, with or without consent. The war against Native Americans was one in which Americans either sought and participated in annihilation efforts or believed this end was inevitable. In the age of rational thought, meditation on the issue could lead from gratitude for the help early settlers received from Native Americans to the observation they didn't enclose their land and had no concept of private property,

to the conviction they were unmotivated by profit and therefore irreconcilable savages. But it takes more than rational thought to mobilize one society to exterminate another.

The belief in manifest destiny -- that God put the settlers in America for preordained and glorious purposes which gave them a right to everything -- turned out to be just the ticket for a free people opposed to persecution and the tyranny of church and state.

Lest the irony elude you, economic freedom requires divorcing the state from religion, but God can be used to whip up the masses, distribute "It's Them or Us" cards, and send people out to die on behalf of intellectuals and investors who've rationalized their chosenness.

CHAPTER TWO: INSTILLING THE ILLUSION OF CHOICE

Selfishness may be exalted as the root and branch of capitalism, but it doesn't make you look good to the party on the receiving end or those whose sympathy he earns. For that, you need a government prepared to do four things, which each have separate dictums based on study, theorization, and experience.

Coercion: Force is illegitimate only if you can't sell it.
Persuasion: How do I market thee? Let me count the ways.
Bargaining: If you won't scratch my back, then how about a piece of the pie?
Indoctrination: Because I said so. (And paid for the semantics.)

Predatory capitalism is the control and expropriation of land, labor, and natural resources by a foreign government via coercion, persuasion, bargaining, and indoctrination.

At the coercive stage, we can expect military and/ or police intervention to repress the subject populace. The persuasive stage will be marked by clientelism, in which a small percentage of the populace will be rewarded for loyalty, often serving as the capitalists' administrators, tax collectors, and enforcers. At the bargaining stage, efforts will be made to include the populace, or a certain percentage of it, in the country's ruling system, and this is usually marked by steps toward democratic (or, more often, autocratic) governance.

At the fourth stage, the populace is educated by capitalists, such that they continue to maintain a relationship of dependency.


The Predatory Debt Link

In many cases, post- colonial states were forced to assume the debts of their colonizers. And where they did not, they were encouraged to become in debt to the West via loans that were issued through international institutions to ensure they did not fall prey to communism or pursue other economic policies that were inimical to the West. Debt is the tie that binds nation states to the geostrategic and economic interests of the West.

As such, the Cold War era was a time of easy credit, luring postcolonial states to undertake the construction of useless monoliths and monuments, and to even expropriate such loans through corruption and despotism, thereby making these independent rulers as predatory as colonizers. While some countries were wiser than others and did use the funds for infrastructural improvements, these were also things that benefited the West and particularly Western contractors. In his controversial work Confessions of an Economic Hit Man , John Perkins reveals that he was a consultant for an American firm (MAIN), whose job was to ensure that states became indebted beyond their means so they would remain loyal to their creditors, buying them votes within United Nations organizations, among other things.

Predatory capitalists demand export- orientations as the means to generate foreign currency with which to pay back debt. In the process, the state must privatize and drastically slash or eliminate any domestic subsidies which are aimed at helping native industry compete in the marketplace. Domestic consumption and imports must be radically contained, as shown by the exchange rate policies recommended by the IMF. The costs of obtaining domestic capital will be pushed beyond the reach of most native producers, while wages must be depressed to an absolute bare minimum. In short, the country's land, labor, and natural resources must be sold at bargain basement prices in order to make these goods competitive, in what one author has called "a spiraling race to the bottom," as countries producing predominantly the same goods engage in cutthroat competition whose benefactor is the West.

Under these circumstances, foreign investment is encouraged, but this, too, represents a loaded situation for countries that open their markets to financial liberalization. Since, in most cases, the

IMF does not allow restrictions on the conditions of capital inflows, it means that financial investors can literally dictate their terms. And since no country is invulnerable to attacks on its currency, which governments must try to keep at a favorable exchange rate, it means financial marauders can force any country to try to prop up its currency using vital reserves of foreign exchange which might have been used to pay their debt.

When such is the case, the IMF comes to the rescue with a socalled "bailout fund," that allows foreign investors to withdraw their funds intact, while the government reels from the effects of an IMF- imposed austerity plan, often resulting in severe recession the offshoot of which is bankruptcies by the thousands and plummeting employment.

In countries that experienced IMF bailouts due to attacks on their currencies, the effect was to reset the market so the only economic survivors were those who remained export- oriented and were strong enough to withstand the upheaval. This means they remained internationally competitive, which translates to low earnings of foreign exchange. At the same time that the country is being bled from the bottom up through mass unemployment, extremely low wages, and the "spiraling race to the bottom," it is in an even more unfavorable position concerning the payment of debt. The position is that debt slavery ensues, as much an engine of extraction as any colonial regime ever managed.


The Role of Indoctrination

The fact that it is sovereign governments overseeing the work of debt repression has much to do with education, which is the final phase of predatory capitalism, concluding in indoctrination. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the lesson to the world was that socialism can't work, nor were there any remaining options for countries that pursued "the third way" other than capitalism. This produced a virulent strain of neoliberalism in which most people were, and are, being educated. The most high- ranking of civil servants have either been educated in the West or directly influenced by its thinking. And this status of acceptance and adherence finally constitutes indoctrination. The system is now self- sustaining, upheld by domestic agents.

While predatory capitalism can proceed along a smooth continuum from coercion to persuasion to bargaining to formal indoctrination, the West can regress to any of these steps at any point in

time, given the perceived need to interfere with varying degrees of force in order to protect its interests.


Trojan Politics

Democracy is about having the power and flexibility to graft our system of government and predatory capitalism onto any target country, regardless of relative strength or conflicting ideologies. An entire productive industry has grown up using the tools of coercion, persuasion, bargaining, and formal indoctrination to maximize their impact in the arena of U. S. politics. Its actors know how to jerk the right strings, push the right buttons, and veer from a soft sell to a hard sell when resistance dictates war, whether it's with planes overhead and tanks on the ground or with massive capital flight that panics the whole world.

When the U. S. political economy goes into warp overdrive, its job proves far more valuable than anything ever made in the strict material sense because there's never been more at stake in terms of what it's trying to gain. It's the American idea machine made up of corporations, lobbyists, think tanks, foundations, universities, and consultants in every known discipline devoted to mass consumerism, and what they sell is illusory opportunity dressed in American principles. They embrace political candidates who'll play by elitist rules to preserve the fiction of choice, and, in this way, they maintain legitimacy, no matter what kind of "reallocation" is on the economic agenda.

The issue is not whether we'll question it, but who we'll applaud for administering it.

In the Information Age, perception management is king.


[Sep 28, 2020] The Empire still refuses to deal with Russia in any other way except insults, bullying, threats, accusations, sanctions, and constant sabre-rattling by The Saker

Sep 28, 2020 | www.unz.com

Oh, but it gets better.

NATO seems to be trying to frighten Russia with maneuvers in Poland and B-52 flights over the Ukraine and the Black Sea ( see here for a full analysis). As for the Poles and Ukronazis, they apparently believe that the Russian bear covered himself in poop and ran away at full speed.

What I am going to say next is not a secret, every military person who looked into this issue knows and understands this: NATO, and I mean the combined power of all NATO member states, simply does not have the hardware needed to wage a war against Russia in Europe. What NATO does have is only sufficient to trigger a serious incident which might result in a shooting war. But once this war starts, the chances of victory for NATO are exactly zero. Why?

Well, for one thing, while coalitions of countries might give a thin veneer of political legitimacy to a military action (in reality, only a UNSC resolution would), in purely military terms you are much better off having a single national military. Not only that, but coalitions are nothing but the expression of an often held delusion: the delusion that the little guy can hide behind the back of the big guy. Poland's entire history can be summarized in this simple principle: strike the weak and bootlick (or even worse !) the powerful. In contrast, real military powers don't count on some other guy doing the heavy lifting for them. They simply fight until they win.

Yes, the Europeans, being the cowards that they are, do believe that there is safety in numbers. But each time these midgets gang up on Russia and start barking (or, to use Putin's expression, start oinking ) all together, the Russians clearly see that the Europeans are afraid. Otherwise, they would not constantly seek somebody to protect them (even against a non-existing threat).

As a direct result of this delusion, NATO simply does not have the equivalent of the First Guard Tank Army in spite of the fact that NATO has a bigger population and much bigger budgets than Russia. Such a tank Army is what it would take to fight a real war in Europe, Russia has such an Army. NATO does not.

The other thing NATO does not have is a real integrated multi-layered air defense system. Russia does.

Lastly, NATO has no hypersonic weapons. Russia does.

(According to President Trump, the US does have super-dooper " hydrosonic " weapons, but nobody really knows what that is supposed to mean).

I would even argue that the comparatively smaller Belarusian military could make hamburger meat of the roughly three times larger Polish armed forces in a very short time (unlike the Poles, the Belarusian are excellent soldiers and they know that they are surrounded by hostile countries on three sides).

As for the "armed forces" of the Baltic statelets, they are just a sad joke.

One more example: the Empire is now sending ships into the Black Sea as some kind of "show of force". Yet, every military analyst out there knows that the Black Sea is a "Russian lake" and that no matter how many ships the US or NATO sends into the Black Sea, their life expectancy in case of a conflict would be measured in minutes.

There is a popular expression in Russia which, I submit, beautifully sums up the current US/NATO doctrine: пугать ежа голой задницей , which can be translated as " trying to scare a hedgehog with your naked bottom ".

The truth is that NATO military forces currently are all in very bad shape – all of them, including the US – and that their only advantage over Russia is in numbers. But as soon as you factor in training, command and control, the ability to operate with severely degraded C3I capabilities, the average age of military hardware or morale – the Russian armed forces are far ahead of the West.

Does anybody sincerely believe that a few B-52s and a few thousand soldiers from different countries playing war in Poland will really scare the Russian generals?

But if not – why the threats?

My explanation is simple: the rulers of the Empire simply hope that the people in the West will never find out how bad their current military posture really is, and they also know that Russia will never attack first – so they simply pretend like they are still big, mighty and relevant. This is made even easier by the fact that the Russians always downplay their real capabilities (in sharp contrast to the West which always brags about "the best XYZ in the world"). That, and the fact that nobody in the Western ruling classes wants to admit that the game is over and that the Empire has collapsed.

... the Empire still refuses to deal with Russia in any other way except insults, bullying, threats, accusations, sanctions, and constant sabre-rattling. This has never, and I mean never, worked in the past, and it won't work in the future. But, apparently, NATO generals simply cannot comprehend that insanity can be defined as " doing the same thing over and over again, while hoping to achieve different results ".

Finally, I will conclude with a short mention of US politicians.

First, Trump. He now declares that the Russians stole the secret of hypersonic weapons from Obama. This reminds me of how the Brits declared that Russia stole their vaccine against the sars-cov-2 virus. But, if the Russians stole all that, why is it that ONLY Russia has deployed hypersonic weapons (not the US) and ONLY Russia has both two vaccines and 2 actual treatments (and not the UK)? For a good laugh, check out Andrei Martyanov's great column " Russia Steal Everything ".

And then there is Nancy Pelosi who, apparently, is considering, yes, you guessed it – yet another impeachment attempt against Trump? The charge this time? Exercising this Presidential prerogative to nominate a successor to Ruth Ginsburg. Okay, Pelosi might be senile, but she also is in deep denial if she thinks impeaching Trump is still a viable project. Frankly? I think that she lost it.

In fact, I think that all the Dems have gone absolutely insane: they are now considering packing both the Supreme Court and the Senate. The fact that doing so will destroy the US political system does not seem to bother them in the least.

Conclusion: quos Deus vult perdere prius dementat !

We live in a world where facts or logic have simply become irrelevant and nobody cares about such clearly outdated categories. We have elevated " doubleplusgoodthinking " into an art form. We have also done away with the concepts of "proof" or "evidence" which we have replaced with variations on the "highly likely" theme. We have also, for all practical purpose, jettisoned the entire corpus of international law and replaced it with " rules-based international order ". In fact, I can only agree with Chris Hedges who, in his superb book the " Empire of illusions " and of the "triumph of spectacle". He is absolutely correct: not only is this a triumph of appearance over substance, and of ideology over reality, it is even the triumph of self-destruction over self-preservation.

There is not big "master plan", no complex international conspiracy, no 5D chess. All we have is yet another empire committing suicide and, like so many before this one, this suicide is executed by this empire's ruling classes.

Lawofkarma , says: September 26, 2020 at 1:34 am GMT

According to the updated Russian military doctrine, any missile fired at Russia would be considered tipped with Nuclear war head. If so, with available Hypersonic weapons, a significant portions of the Empire, including EU would be potentially turned to Radioactive ash within 20 minutes. Does this register at the highest levels of the Empire? I surely hope so.

[Sep 28, 2020] Russia itself did not sell out. It was the idiotic drunkard Yeltsin, who was surrounded by the Jewish Oligarchs who positioned themselves to take over state industrial assets in cahoots with financial assistance from abroad and who happened to despise the Narod, the Russian people.

Sep 28, 2020 | www.unz.com

Majority of One , says: September 26, 2020 at 5:37 pm GMT

@simonn

Russia itself did not sell out. It was the idiotic drunkard Yeltsin, who was surrounded by the Jewish Oligarchs who positioned themselves to take over state industrial assets in cahoots with financial assistance from abroad and who happened to despise the Narod, the Russian people. When Putin took over he made deals with some of these parasites, but threw out the worst ones and gradually was able to restore the nation and its pride.

JimDandy , says: September 26, 2020 at 3:51 pm GMT
@Zarathustra

The Neocons have a massive hardon for Russia because they are an impediment to absolute Israeli hegemony in the Middle East.

lavoisier , says: Website September 26, 2020 at 5:54 pm GMT
@JimDandy

Yes, but main reason Neocons hate Russia is that Putin imprisoned and or dispossessed many of the criminal Jewish oligarchs that had robbed Russia blind under Yeltsin.

Their ransacking of the country was stopped by Putin.

Hence, the hatred.

His support for the Russian Orthodox faith also does not sit well with the Neocons.

[Sep 28, 2020] Truth be told: political operatives own and run our MSM. This is why the press is called the 'Fourth Estate'

Highly recommended!
Aug 21, 2020 | www.unz.com
Ragno says: August 21, 2020 at 4:16 pm GMT 800 Words ⇑ @mark green

Truth be told: political operatives own and run our MSM. This is why the press is called the 'Fourth Estate'.

They are more correctly described as a Fifth Column , one far more open and sworn to destroy our country and its foundational citizens – and taxpayers – as any that ever operated during World War II. You would think this would be of vital interest to people who loudly declare themselves to be "Nazi-punchers", but who time and again show themselves to be merely low-level street terrorists informed and inspired by Mao's Red Guard and the irredeemable thugs of the African National Congress.

One wonders what's preventing them from mimicking the Red Terror waged by the leftists of Spain, when the battle for "freedom" involved the disinterment of the graves of Catholic clergy to better pose the corpses in blasphemous positions. Imagine how depraved those Mostly Peaceful protesters had to have been for even a leftist-supporting site such as Wikipedia to baldly state

The violence consisted of the killing of tens of thousands of people (including 6,832 Roman Catholic priests, the vast majority in the summer of 1936 in the wake of the military coup), attacks on the Spanish nobility, industrialists, and conservative politicians, as well as the desecration and burning of monasteries and churches.

Directly in the crosshairs this time are small and medium-sized owner-operated businesses – the true backbone of American freedom and prosperity – who have largely been sacrificed in exchange for the knock-kneed offerings of Danegeld from our giant conglomerates, all of whom have prospered immensely from the suffering and privation brought on by the Democratic lockdown of society – and the total shutdown of our economy.

Think! – have you read a single article charting how the government war on small business directly enriched Amazon.com and world's richest autocrat, Jeff Bezos? . who then funnels his windfall into a newspaper that blatantly pimps for the Democratic Party, which translates into a vast payday for the DNC, not least from its newly-approved partnership with the shadowy and many-tentacled Soros-surrogate group, BLM?

The result is what you'd expect when a fringe group operates with the full cooperation and partnership of major industry and both political parties (don't confuse Trump with a standard-issue Republican, please – he may have terrible flaws, but that isn't one of them) – 10% of the population holding the other 90% in a chokehold with only one set of rules: no arrest and prosecution for Bolshevik violence and terror ..but the zero-tolerance heavy hand of corrupt Leviathan coming down hard against any and all citizens who fight back or, eventually – inevitably – who even struggle against their restraints.

Short of the sudden arrival of celestial horsemen to punish the guilty and reward the set-upon, it has become clear that the only answer is the one that the Powers That Be claim to be dead set against: racial separatism. (Particularly when we consider that all that will be necessary to turn America into Hell on earth will be the adoption of Ibram Kendi's First Law, sometimes known as equality of outcome :

To fix the original sin of racism, Americans should pass an anti-racist amendment to the U.S. Constitution that enshrines two guiding anti-racist principals: Racial inequity is evidence of racist policy and the different racial groups are equals.

Could any "amendment" be more terrifyingly totalitarian than this?)

White and black separation would, instead, accomplish two goals, both more important than Kendi's quick fix: we would learn soon enough about actual equality of outcomes (which is why no Communist, black or white, wants anything to do with the creation of one more failed basket-case black state), and much more importantly, white families can sleep secure in their beds at night, without worrying about Apache raids at midnight, egged on and recorded for "posterity" by that Fourth Estate/Fifth Column referred to up top. Because the fact of the matter is that, even should some combination of government and law-enforcement halt the burning and looting of America – as things stand now, none of the worst malefactors will ever see the inside of a prison cell .which means any ceasefire will only be temporary, to be violently ripped asunder the moment they sense white Americans have at last lowered their guard once more. And living in perpetual paranoid readiness for violent uprisings and mindless destruction is no way to live at all.

Trump has it half right, a border wall is the answer: only it needs to run lengthwise , between the Southern and Northern borders. If we don't use the next four years to plan out such a separation, fretting over our children's children will be a fruitless exercise – those who aren't murdered will be captured and 'go native' .and in case you haven't looked at a globe lately, there's no place left to run.

Majority of One , says: August 21, 2020 at 4:33 pm GMT

@Miro23

As a recovering journalist, I can point out that even on a rinkydink rag in a small city, where I got fired for being a real journalist back in the early '70's; he who owns the presses and distribution networks calls the tune. It's a matter of working-class (no matter how middle-class your income or social-status) versus the ownership class. The latter wins every time.

[Sep 28, 2020] Washington's Hybrid War On Russian Energy Targets Germany, Belarus, And Bulgaria -

Sep 28, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Washington's Hybrid War On Russian Energy Targets Germany, Belarus, And Bulgaria


by Tyler Durden Sun, 09/27/2020 - 08:10 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print

Authored by Andrew Korybko via OneWorld.press,

The US is ruthlessly waging an intense Hybrid War on Russian energy interests in Europe by targeting the Eurasian Great Power's relevant projects in Germany, Belarus, and Bulgaria, banking on the fact that even the partial success of this strategy would greatly advance the scenario of an externally provoked "decoupling" between Moscow and Washington's transatlantic allies.

The Newest Front In The New Cold War

The New Cold War is heating up in Europe after the US intensified its Hybrid War on Russian interests there over the past two months. This proxy conflict is being simultaneously waged in Germany, Belarus, and Bulgaria, all three of which are key transit states for Russian energy exports to the continent, which enable it to maintain at least some influence there even during the worst of times. The US, however, wants to greatly advance the scenario of an externally provoked "decoupling" between Moscow and Washington's transatlantic allies which would allow America to reassert its unipolar hegemony there even if this campaign is only partially successful. This article aims to explore the broad contours of the US' contemporary Hybrid War strategy on Russian energy in Europe, pointing out how recent events in those three previously mentioned transit states are all part of this larger plan.

Germany

From north to south, the first and largest of these targets is Germany, which is nowadays treating Russian anti-corruption blogger Navalny. The author accurately predicted in late August that "intense pressure might be put upon the authorities by domestic politicians and their American patrons to politicize the final leg of Nord Stream II's construction by potentially delaying it as 'punishment to Putin'", which is exactly what's happening after Berlin signaled that it might rethink its commitment to this energy project. America isn't all to blame, however, since Germany ultimately takes responsibility for its provocative statements to this effect. Dmitri Trenin, Director of the Carnegie Moscow Center, published a thought-provoking piece titled " Russian-German Relations: Back To The Future " about how bilateral relations will drastically change in the aftermath of this incident. It's concise and well worth the read for those who are interested in this topic.

Belarus

The next Hybrid War target is Belarus , which the author has been tracking for half a decade already. After failing to convince Lukashenko to break off ties with Russia after this summer's Wagner incident, a Color Revolution was then hatched to overthrow him so that his replacements can turn the country into another Ukraine insofar as it relates to holding Russian energy exports to Europe hostage. The end goal is to increase the costs of Russian resources so that the US' own become more competitive by comparison. Ultimately, it's planned that Russian pipelines will be phased out in the worst-case scenario, though this would happen gradually since Europe can't immediately replace such imports with American and other ones. "Losing" Belarus, whether on its own or together with Nord Stream II, would deal a heavy blow to Russia's geopolitical interests. Countries like Germany wouldn't have a need to maintain cordial relations with it, thus facilitating a possible "decoupling".

Bulgaria

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That's where Bulgaria could become the proverbial "icing on the cake". Turkish Stream is expected to transit through this Balkan country en route to Europe, but the latest anti-government protests there threaten to topple the government, leading to worries that its replacement might either politicize or suspend this project. Azerbaijan's TANAP and the Eastern Mediterranean's GRISCY pipelines might help Southeastern Europe compensate for the loss of Russian resources, though the latter has yet to be constructed and is only in the planning stages right now. Nevertheless, eliminating Turkish Stream from the energy equation (or at the very least hamstringing the project prior to replacing/scrapping it) would deal a death blow to Russia's already very limited Balkan influence. Russia would then be practically pushed out of the region, becoming nothing more than a distant cultural-historical memory with close to no remaining political influence to speak of.

Economic Warfare

The overarching goal connecting these three Hybrid War fronts isn't just to weaken Russia's energy interests, but to replace its current role with American and other industry competitors. The US-backed and Polish-led " Three Seas Initiative " is vying to become a serious player in the strategic Central & Eastern European space, and it can achieve a lot of its ambitions through the construction of new LNG and oil terminals for facilitating America's plans. In addition, artificially increasing the costs of Russian energy imports through political means related to these Hybrid Wars could also reduce Russia's revenue from these sources, which presently account for 40% of its budget . Considering that Russia's in the midst of a systemic economic transition away from its disproportionate budgetary dependence on energy, this could hit Moscow where it hurts at a sensitive time.

The Ball's In Berlin's Court

The linchpin of Russia's defensive strategy is Germany, without whose support all of Moscow's energy plans stand zero chance of succeeding. If Germany submits to the US on one, some, or all three of these Hybrid War fronts in contravention of its natural economic interests, then it'll be much easier for America to provoke a comprehensive "decoupling" between Russia and Europe. It's only energy geopolitics that allows for both sides to maintain some sense of cooperation despite the US-encouraged sanctions regime against Russia after its reunification with Crimea and thus provides an opportunity for improving their relations sometime in the future. Sabotaging Russia's energy interests there would thus doom any realistic prospects for a rapprochement between them, but the ball's in Berlin's court since it has the chance to say no to the US and ensure that the German-Russian Strategic Partnership upholds Europe's strategic autonomy across the present century.

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Concluding Thoughts

For as much as cautiously optimistic as many in the Alt-Media Community might be that the US' Hybrid War on Russian energy in Europe will fail, the facts paint a much more sobering picture which suggests that at least one of these plots will succeed. Should that happen, then the era of energy geopolitics laying the foundation for Russian-European relations will soon draw to a close, thereby facilitating the US' hoped-for "decoupling" between them, causing budgetary difficulties for Moscow at the moment when it can least afford to experience such, and pushing the Eurasian Great Power's strategic attention even further towards Asia. The last-mentioned consequence will put more pressure on Russia to perfect its "balancing" act between China and India , which could potentially be a double-edged sword that makes it more relevant in Asian geopolitical affairs but also means that one wrong move might seriously complicate its 21st-century grand strategy .

Vegetius , 4 hours ago

If you look at the three countries mentioned Belarus will likely be absorbed by Russia sooner rather than later. The push for this is underway looking at meetings taking place. For Bulgaria the US is far away and has no power to stop the Turks. It is the Turks the Bulgarians fear, with a lot of reasons, their surest way of keeping out of the Turks clutches is to look to Russia for support. Unfortunately the USA has an appalling track record of betraying countries, ask Libya.

The Germans have no choice but take the Russian gas, economically, socially and for strategic reasons. The truly big fear for the US is a German/Russian bloc. German and Russian technology with unrivaled resources. That is the future super power if they are pushed together, something that is very likely if we see a major economic contraction in the next few years.

Mustahattu , 4 hours ago

The US fear of an Eurasian alliance. The US fear Europe will create a Silicon Valley of the future. The US fear the Euro will replace the dollar as a reserve currency. The US fear Russia will become a superpower. The US fear China. There's a lot to fear yankee dear...cos it's all gonna happen.

Hope Copy , 1 hour ago

RUSSIA is content with 45 and 25nm as it can be hardened.. 14 and especially 7nm is so that the **** will wear out..

Ace006 , 2 hours ago

Instead of fretting about how this or that country or bloc will become a/an _________ superpower the US could focus on regaining its former pre-eminence.

It's a crazy thought, I know, but

  1. moving a massive amount of industrial capacity to China and fueling the rise of a communist country just might have been a bad idea and
  2. thrashing about in the international arena like a rutting rhinoceros at huge expense makes us look foolish and, in the case of Syria, petty and vindictive.

Repairing the damage from the former and stopping the hemorrhage of money and reputation respectively would be a far better objective than playing Frankenstein in Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Ukraine, Georgia, Serbia, Iran, Poland, N. Korea, and Venezuela, inter alia . Mexico is a failed state right on our border that contributes mightily to our immigration, cultural, and political problems. But, no, the puffed up, prancing morons who make US policy can summon the imagination to figure out how to help our very own neighbors deal with their hideous problems. No. Let's engage in regime change and "nation building" in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Ukraine, and Belarus.

The words of the great Marcus Aurelius are on point: "Within ten days thou wilt seem a god to those to whom thou art now a beast and an ape, if thou wilt return to thy principles and the worship of reason."

Herodotus , 1 hour ago

Bulgaria must return to the protection of the Ottoman Empire.

yerfej , 4 hours ago

Easy solution, end NATO. Just have all US forces told to leave the EU and let them determine their own destiny. Then do the same with US forces in the ME, Japan, Korea, etc. EVERYONE would be better off, including US taxpayers which get nothing out of the useless overseas deployment of resources which could be better spent at home.

yojimbo , 3 hours ago

5% budget deficit, 5% military spending. Leave the world, drop 4.5% of the spending and either save money, or build infrastructure. It's so simple, I am disappointed Trump doesn't at least state it. I get he is limited by the system, and can't be a Cincinnatus, even if he wanted to, but he has his First Amendment.. though I grant him a personal fear of being Kennedied!

Bac Si , 2 hours ago

Howdy Yerfej. It sounds like you are all for Isolationism.

But Isolationism means different things to different people. Pre WW2, Isolationism in the US meant selling our products to hostile countries. In the case of Japan, oil to help them kill Chinese people. In the case of Germany and Italy, food and vehicles to help them conquer all of Europe.

Considering the ridiculous education that the US gives its children, it's no wonder that most Americans don't know much about history (I say that in general terms, not to you specifically). Henry Ford senior not only received the 'Grand Cross of the German Eagle' from Adolf Hitler in 1938, he also received a 'Congressional Medal' from the US Congress shortly after WW2 – and for the same reason. Selling trucks to help the war effort.

Even after Pearl Harbor, there were politically powerful Isolationists that did not want the US to get involved in WW2. Why? Because a lot of money was at stake. It still is. These same people will continue to argue for Isolationism even after we are attacked.

Two months AFTER Pearl Harbor, FDR made a speech that included this:

"Those Americans who believed that we could live under the illusion of isolationism wanted the American eagle to imitate the tactics of the ostrich. Now, many of those same people, afraid that we may be sticking our necks out, want our national bird to be turned into a turtle. But we prefer to retain the eagle as it is – flying high and striking hard. I know that I speak for the mass of the American people when I say that we reject the turtle policy and will continue increasingly the policy of carrying the war to the enemy in distant lands and distant waters – as far away as possible from our own home grounds." – FDR

This radical change in our foreign policy has never been explained or even referred to in US history books. Powerful economic forces will always love the idea of "Open Trade Isolationism". But if Isolationism is ever suddenly defined by not doing business with any hostile government – those powerful forces will go ballistic. They will strongly lobby against 'Economic Warfare'. In other words, they will always want to make lots of money by selling their products to hostile governments, no matter how many people die.

Want a great example?

Right after Loral Corporation CEO Bernard L. Schwartz donated a million dollars to the DNC, President Clinton authorized the release of ballistic missile technology to China so Loral could get their satellites into space fast and at low cost. Those same missiles, and their nuclear warheads, are now pointed at the US.

The argument has always been that if we trade with hostile governments, they will grow to like us. Does anyone out there believe that if the UK and France gave pre WW2 Germany an extra $20 billion in trade, Germany wouldn't have started WW2? Anyone with a brain would tell you that Germany would have put those resources into their military (like China has been doing) and WW2 would have started earlier.

Yerfej, if we brought back the Cold War organization called the Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Controls (COCOM), I would be all for Isolationism. President Clinton got rid of it in his first year, and Western weapons technology has been threatening us ever since.

BaNNeD oN THe RuN , 5 hours ago

You have to love the dynamic duo of "lie, cheat and steal" Pompeo and his "mob boss" Trump. There is absolutely no subtlety in their obvious shakedown tactics.

PrivetHedge , 4 hours ago

The mob had far more honor, and better morals.

PrivetHedge , 4 hours ago

Washington's transatlantic allies...

Hahahah, occupied vassals.
Washington has cost Germany a massive slice of GDP.

you_do , 4 hours ago

Yankee has plenty of problems at home.

Rest of the world can decide their own energy policy.

They do not suffer from the 'Russia' propaganda.

geno-econ , 5 hours ago

Let Russia, the lowest cost energy producer win energy competition in Europe as China, the lowest cost manufacturing producer is winning in America. Only difference is retailers, shippers, assembly part importers such as auto, electronics and appliance makers are making a profit and consumer gets lower prices. We should let others decide for themselves and stop meddling----only result will be a bloody nose

you_do , 4 hours ago

Yankee has plenty of problems at home.

Rest of the world can decide their own energy policy.

They do not suffer from the 'Russia' propaganda.

geno-econ , 5 hours ago

Let Russia, the lowest cost energy producer win energy competition in Europe as China, the lowest cost manufacturing producer is winning in America. Only difference is retailers, shippers, assembly part importers such as auto, electronics and appliance makers are making a profit and consumer gets lower prices. We should let others decide for themselves and stop meddling----only result will be a bloody nose

free-energy , 4 hours ago

Notice how everything the US does around the world is a WAR. War on Energy, War on Drugs, War on Birth Control, War War War... America will fall after 2020 if nothing changes for the better. Every year the world grows more and more tired of the US bs and moves further away from it. Its so bad that they choose to deal with a communist country over us.

You reap what you've sowed.

Bobby Farrell Can Dance , 3 hours ago

The Anglo American parasite pirate gangsters keep barking on about Russia bad, China bad, but I look around and I see nothing but these trouble makers waging war on anything they cannot control. The US and UK are devil nations. They will deserve all the rot they have coming their way.

Unknown User , 5 hours ago

Trump wants a trade balance with all major economies like Germany and China. If they don't buy from us, he will have to raise tariffs. In case of Germany, they need nothing from us so he wants them to buy US LNG. Merkel's position is that "there is a cheap Russian gas", while Trump is telling her "no there isn't one".

Pumpinfe , 4 hours ago

So trump loves to deep throat Russia but give Germany a hard time to Nordstream 2? Wake up fanboys, your hero is a ******. I got so much money invested in gazprom. LNG is junk and gazprom (Russian owned) is gona crush LNG and trump and his idiot following can't do a damn thing. You trump idiots will believe anything. Let me enlighten you...gazprom is the lowest cost producer of natural gas in the world...go look at the difference between gazprom and LNG and then you will realize that orange dump is an idiot along with his army of empty heads. Oh and if you think China and Russia are not friendly, go look up the Power of Siberia pipeline. That will give you a good sense of the relationship between Russia and China. America is rotting from the inside and Russia and China are eating their popcorn watching it happen.

Dabooda , 3 hours ago

I don't see Trump deep-throating anyone but Netanyahu. Sans gratuitous insults, your comment about Gazprom is spot on

Lokiban , 5 hours ago

I doubt Merkel will give in. She would commit political suicide if she did that. She knows Navalny is a US effort to stop Nordstream 2.
What is the alternative? Buying gas from the US or US-controlled oilfields in Iraq and Syria? Putin might have a say in that.

Lokiban , 5 hours ago

I doubt Merkel will give in. She would commit political suicide if she did that. She knows Navalny is a US effort to stop Nordstream 2.
What is the alternative? Buying gas from the US or US-controlled oilfields in Iraq and Syria? Putin might have a say in that.

thurstjo63 , 3 hours ago

The main fault in Mr Korybko's thinking is that he believes that European countries will not just shoot themselves in the foot but in the head to appease the US. At a european and local level, those who wanted Nord Stream 2 to be suspended or killed have failed. The costs are way too high. For that we can thank, perversely, the agreements associated with protecting investments from political decisions pushed by the US itself!!! Given that there is no proof of Navalny being poisoned, Germany knows that there is no way that they could hope to win their case for stopping Nord Stream 2 in a tribunal with persons capable of rational thought. That is why they made the deal to buy some US liquified gas for a couple of billion dollars. Because that is the cheapest way of extricating themselves from this situation. Otherwise, they are looking at orders of magnitude more compensation to russian and european firms for stopping the pipeline.

As for Belarus, barring Lukashenko doing something profoundly stupid like reacting violently to protests, that ship has already sailed. Protests are smaller every week and mainly on the weekend as now the "opposition" has been publishing people's profiles accusing them of collaborating with the government without any proof, leading to innocent people and their families to be threatened. There will be a transition from Lukashenko over the next couple of years but you can be sure that the present "opposition" given their desire to break away from Russia will not be part of the group that comes to power in the future since their base of support diminishes every week.

Finally Bulgaria already shot themselves in the foot when they backed out of South Stream and had major problems securing energy resources to meet its needs during the intervening period. Radev as any politician wanting to stay in office knows, if he doesn't go through with connecting Turk Stream to the rest of Europe that he might as well resign. So unless the US has compromising information on him that can force him from office or the Radev's administration doesn't control the US attempts to create the conditions for a colour revolution in Bulgaria, it is definitely not going to happen.

I'm sorry but Mr. Korybko is wrong on all counts!

Savvy , 4 hours ago

When the US backed Georgia's violent incursion into S Ossetia it took Russia one day to send them back.

Russians are slow to saddle but ride fast.

Joiningupthedots , 2 hours ago

That was with the remnants of the old Soviet Army too.

The new Russian Army is an entirely different beast in both organisation, training, experience and equipment.

This guy has his finger on the pulse;

http://thesaker.is/the-world-has-gone-absolutely-insane/

JeanTrejean , 5 hours ago

Are the USA really at war with Russia...and EU?

Decoupling Russia from EU, is re-enforcing the Eurasia bloc...where is the future of the world.

Russia belongs to Europa...not the USA.

BaNNeD oN THe RuN , 4 hours ago

Geographically Europe and Asia are one continent. It was "European exceptionalism" (the precursor to American Exceptionalism) that divided it as an ethno-cultural construct.

researchfix , 5 hours ago

Cancelling NS2 will chase the German industry into Russia. Cheap energy, moderate wages, Eurasian market at the front steps.

The sheep and their ex working places and Mutti will stay in Germany.

Bobby Farrell Can Dance , 3 hours ago

Do Germans want to be slaves of these abject Brits and Americans? Pffffft....gas from Russia is a NO BRAINER.

Only British and Americans rats do not like that idea. How un-selfish then, it is for these jealous, insecure morons to dictate to Germany how she should trade. That's called outright meddling. These imperialists are like entitled Karens, they think the world owes them favours at the snap of a finger.

Sandmann , 4 hours ago

Nordstream 2 has an add-on leg to UK. Germany is largest gas importer on earth and cannot run its industry without gas imports from Russia. LNG is simply too expensive unless US taxpayers subsidise it.

If US wants to destabilise Europe it will reap the consequences. Southern Europe depends on gas from North Africa - Portugal generates electricity from Maghreb Pipeline to Spain from Algeria via Morocco. Erdogan hopes to put Turkey in position of supplying gas to Europe.

Germany will not abandon Nordstream 2 but might abandon USA first.

Max21c , 3 hours ago

The US is ruthlessly waging an intense Hybrid War on Russian energy interests in Europe by targeting the Eurasian Great Power's relevant projects in Germany, Belarus, and Bulgaria, banking on the fact that even the partial success of this strategy would greatly advance the scenario of an externally provoked "decoupling" between Moscow and Washington's transatlantic allies.

It's a petty game and when it fails then the Washingtonians credibility and legitimacy just further erodes. The EU needs the energy supplies and the Russian Federation has the supplies. It's all just short term & small gain silliness by a pack of freaks in Washington DC and their freaks in the CIA, Thunk Tank freaks and freaks in the foreign policy establishment. It's just more of the Carnival sideshow/freakshow put on by Washingtonians. As usual if it's a Washingtonian (post Cold War) policy then there's little or no substance behind it and you can be sure it hasn't be thought through thoroughly and it'll eventually turn and boomerang back on the circus people in Washington, Ivy League circus people, and JudeoWASP elite circus people, CIA circus clowns and circus clowns in the Thunk Tonks and elites Fareign Poolicy ***-tablishment.

John Hansen , 3 hours ago

If all it takes is a Navaly hoax to cause this Europe isn't really worth dealing with.

propaganda_reaper , 3 hours ago

Once upon a time, a revolution occurred in a country through which passed a gas pipeline. The bad guys were vanquished. And the very good foreign guys who helped the local good guys defeat the tyrant said: "We got the same stuff, but liquid."

Any similarity with fictitious events or characters was purely coincidental.

_ConanTheLibertarian_ , 4 hours ago

Germany needs the gaz.

https://www.politico.eu/article/why-germany-cant-say-no-to-nord-stream/

Obamanism666 , 49 minutes ago

Remember the Gas to Europe still flows through the Ukraine. Russia just needs to reduce the gas Pressure and blame the Ukraine and Europe goes cold and Dark.

German People will beg for Nordstream 2 to be switched on.

lucitanian , 31 minutes ago

That's not the way Russia works. But it's the kind of blackmail that the US uses. And that's why Russia is a more dependable partner for Europe for energy.

Hope Copy , 1 hour ago

This **** goes right back to the 'DeepState' pseudo-revolution that got the Nicky-the-weak killed ,because he financed his railroads and wanted to be rich as hell as he perceived the ENGLISH monarchy to be, with a parliamentary DUMA that he could over rule if need be. I have looked 'DeepState' right in the eyes when I was young and dumb and was told that I would never go to their masion.. Nicky had family enemies. and the Czech fighting force was never going to save him.. Stalin was also double-crossed, but was well informed.. it was in his sector if one reads and believes. Cunning fox Stalin was, always playing those under him to do his bidding.. and that lesson has been well learned by a couple of the world's leaders in this day-in-age...

Herodotus , 1 hour ago

German manufacturing costs must be driven higher to take the heat off of the UK as they emerge from the EU and attempt to become competitive.

novictim , 1 hour ago

When "War" is actually not war but trade policy and financial incentives then you know you are engaged in dangerous bloviations and hyperbole.

When the shooting starts, then you can talk of War.

SuperareDolo , 2 hours ago

Russia might not want to fight these attempts to isolate it from the western economy. The collateral damage will be that much less, once Babylon the great finally falls.

LoveTruth , 2 hours ago

And US claims to be a "Fair Player," caring for freedom and democracy, while twisting arms and supporting corrupted officials.

IronForge , 3 hours ago

PetroUSD, MIC, Colonial Control of Vassals. World Domination Play by the Hegemony.

Just like the Policies of NATO: Russians Out, Germans Down, Anglo-American-ZioMasons and Vatican_Vassals In.

Policies were like this - Sponsored by Anglo-ZioMasons from Pre-WWI, continued through WWII and the First Cold War, and onwards after the Collapse of the SUN and the ensuing NeoCon Wolfowitz Doctrine and PNAC7/Bush-Cheney PetroUSD Plans.

The Hegemony Control MENA Energy Producers. The IRQ-KWT War were mishandled; and KSA demanded for the USA to Smite IRQ. The Initial War and Occupation prompted Hussein to opt the EUR for Petroleum, which Brought about the End of Hussein through the 9-11/PNAC7 Long War.

LBY opted for the Au-Dinar for Petroleum; and were Fail-Stated. IRN and RUS remain the only Major Energy Producers not Controlled by the Hegemony.

IRN were Sanctioned since removing the Shackles of Hegemonic Occupancy via Shah Par Levi; and attempts for Energy Diversification via Nuclear means raised suspicions of Nuclear Weapons Development - prompting for heavier Sanctions and 5thColumn Regime Change Operations by the Hegemony. IRN circumvented Sanctions in part by selling their Petroleum via Major Currencies and Barter. Though many Countries have reduced or maintained their purchase of IRN Petroleum via Sanctions Protocols, CHN are involved in Purchasing IRN's Output.

RUS, another Target of Ruin, Plunder, and Occupational Exploitation by the Hegemony, were Too Large a Country with Standing Armed Forces for Direct Military Invasion by the Hegemony. After the Collapse of the SUN, The Harvard/Chicago led Economic Reforms ended in Plunder - which prompted the Selection and Rise of Putin, who drove out the Plunderers. The Hegemony continue their Geopolitical War of Influence Peddling around RUS while attempting Soft War NATO Membership Recruitment and Regime Change Coups within RUS, Ex-SUN Nation-States, and Trading Partners.

RUS have endured, became Militarily mightier, have become the Major Energy Producer for North/Western Europe and CHN. In addition to the Production, RUS now have begun Trading Petroleum+NatGas outside of the PetroUSD Exchange Mechanism, opting for Customer Currencies or RUB.

RUS and IRN are expected to be Key Providers of the PetroCNY-Au Exchange Mechanism.

The Hegemony and MENA Vassals can't Compete in Combined Petroleum+NatGas Volume and Price; and DEU - by Directly Importing from RUS - will most likely become more Independent from the Hegemon.

CHN, RUS, and DEU - Major Energy, Industrial, Natural Resource, and Military Powers Decoupling from the Influences of the Hegemony, with IND Slowly coming to their Own (IND are simply Too Large to remain Vassals to the Hegemon; and Vassal GBR did so much to Oppress them in the past).

Funny that the Anglo-American-ZioMasons and VAT have brought each of these 3 Powers to Ruin and Occupation in the Past 2 Centuries.

The Ironies being Played Out are that:

1) GBR Lost their Prime Colonies - America/USA, IND, and now Trade City Colony HKG - by their Oppressive and Exploitative Occupancy; and

2) USA, after Fighting Wars for Independence from such Occupations by GBR - Once Becoming a Major Military Power, Followed in the Anglo-ZioMason Tradition of Geopolitical Conquest and Control to the Scale of pursing not only in World Domination - but in Absolute Global Rule.

Maghreb2 , 2 hours ago

Problem is demographic shift . The previous modern system dominated by Zio-Masonry was GNP and GDP where currencies were measured against global output and floated against gold and each other. Now with high inflation and demographic decline knocking out the economy is easier leading to fights between zones of influence. Petro Ruble, Euro or dollar. Dangerous commodities like kilos of heroin, trafficked humans or weapons. Zio-Masonic system has fallen to gangsterism. Hybrid Warfare is the kind of thing we saw in Afghanistan or 80s Columbia . Militarized Russian mafia vs NATO backed militarized police forces.

Once the population reaches a certain age and consumption drops there isn't much to fight over besides social control systems of the young minority. Color revolutions in Central Europe are really only effecting the long term economy of the young . Hope would be Left wing Radicals stood up to the system and aligned with right wing groups to eliminate masonic and Zionist factions and take back the command and control systems before the continet is shut down permanently.

Precision strikes and hunting down their descendents . Easy to find because Hitler and Stalin had their ancestors massacred for loyalty to Rothschild. They won't bite the hands that feed.The Vatican vassal systems was built on knowing that a Zionist is Zionist and Masons is a Mason. They are cults simply teaching them the correct way to behave can avert these political problems.

In terms of Belarus and Russia they should consider the fact the birth rate rate rose after the Soviet collapse and exodus west means many of them shouldn't have even been born in Rothschilds plan. In their " system " economic planning starts at birth because color revolutions effect long term bond issuances they control.

Stalin and Hitler both knew this and used money linked to raw marterials and goods to beat the British gold standard system. If you knew what the Western Central banks were worth you would kill people for using their money.

[Sep 27, 2020] Should Trump be changed as a war criminal along with Obama, Bush, Clinton's, and Dick Cheney

Sep 27, 2020 | www.unz.com

Harold Smith , says: September 26, 2020 at 8:24 pm GMT

@Robert Dolan

"Trump doesn't even have the balls to go after the people who spied on him and tried to remove him from office. This is actually the greatest political scandal in American history, yet nothing will be done about it."

I don't think anyone was actually trying to remove him from office (they could've added his war crimes and violations of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations to the impeachment charges if they were serious about removing him). Most likely it's all political theater to fool the people who need and/or want to be fooled.

Biff , says: September 27, 2020 at 12:45 am GMT
@Harold Smith

I don't think anyone was actually trying to remove him from office ( they could've added his war crimes and violations of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations to the impeachment charges if they were serious about removing him). Most likely it's all political theater to fool the people who need and/or want to be fooled.

We are talking about thee most brazen pack of hypocrites, but charging Trump with war crimes with Obama, Bush, Clinton's, and Dick Cheney just standing around just might be a bridge too far.

Harold Smith , says: September 27, 2020 at 5:30 am GMT
@Biff

However, unlike other candidates for the presidency, war and aggression will not be my first instinct. You cannot have a foreign policy without diplomacy. A superpower understands that caution and restraint are really truly signs of strength."

And as we've seen all of it was a lie. Trump's whole campaign was a calculated bait-and-switch fraud. In order to win the election the con man had to steal votes from antiwar voters such as myself just the same as if he'd rigged voting machines.

Trump is a lying, mass-murdering, psychotic, psychopathic, traitorous, Israel-first, America-last hard core militant zionist extremist.

[Sep 27, 2020] The Real Russian Playbook Is Written in English by Patrick Armstrong

Jul 17, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

I hadn't given The Russian Playbook much attention until Susan Rice, Obama's quondam security advisor, opined a month ago on CNN that " I'm not reading the intelligence today, or these days -- but based on my experience, this is right out of the Russian playbook ". She was referring to the latest U.S. riots.

Once I'd seen this mention of The Russian Playbook (aka KGB, Kremlin or Putin's Playbook), I saw the expression all over the place. Here's an early – perhaps the earliest – use of the term. In October 2016, the Center for Strategic and International studies (" Ranked #1 ") informed us of the " Kremlin Playbook " with this ominous beginning

There was a deeply held assumption that, when the countries of Central and Eastern Europe joined NATO and the European Union in 2004, these countries would continue their positive democratic and economic transformation. Yet more than a decade later, the region has experienced a steady decline in democratic standards and governance practices at the same time that Russia's economic engagement with the region expanded significantly.

And asks

Are these developments coincidental, or has the Kremlin sought deliberately to erode the region's democratic institutions through its influence to 'break the internal coherence of the enemy system'?

Well, to these people, to ask the question is to answer it: can't possibly be disappointment at the gap between 2004's expectations and 2020's reality, can't be that they don't like the total Western values package that they have to accept, it must be those crafty Russians deceiving them. This was the earliest reference to The Playbook that I found, but it certainly wasn't the last.

Russia has a century-old playbook for 'disinformation' 'I believe in Russia they do have their own manual that essentially prescribes what to do,' said Clint Watts, a research fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute and a former FBI agent. (Nov 2018)

The Russian playbook for spreading fake news and conspiracy theories is the subject of a new three-part video series on The New York Times website titled 'Operation Infektion: Russian Disinformation: From The Cold War To Kanye.' (Nov 2018)

I found headlines such as these: Former CIA Director Outlines Russian Playbook for Influencing Unsuspecting Targets (May 2017) ; Fmr. CIA op.: Don Jr. meeting part of Russian playbook (Jul 2017) ; Americans Use Russian Playbook to Spread Disinformation (Oct 2018) ; Factory of Lies: The Russian Playbook (Nov 2018) ; Shredding the Putin Playbook: Six crucial steps we must take on cyber-security -- before it's too late. (Winter 2018) ; Trump's spin is 'all out of the KGB playbook': Counterintelligence expert Malcolm Nance (May 2019) .

Of course, all these people are convinced Moscow interfered in the 2016 presidential election. Somehow. To some effect. Never really specified but the latest outburst of insanity is this video from the Lincoln Project . As Anatoly Karlin observes: "I think it's really cool how we Russians took over America just by shitposting online. How does it feel to be subhuman?" He has a point: the Lincoln Project, and the others shrieking about Russian interference, take it for granted that American democracy is so flimsy and Americans so gullible that a few Facebook ads can bring the whole facade down. A curious mental state indeed.

So let us consider The Russian Playbook. It stands at the very heart of Russian power. It is old: at least a century old . Why, did not Tolstoy's 1908 Letter to a Hindu inspire Gandhi to bring down the British Indian Empire and win the Great Game for Moscow? The Tolstoy-Putin link is undeniable as we are told in A Post-Soviet 'War and Peace': What Tolstoy's Masterwork Explains About Putin's Foreign Policy : "In the early decades of the nineteenth century, Napoleon (like Putin after him) wanted to construct his own international order ". Russian novelists: adepts of The Playbook every one . So there is much to consider about this remarkable Book which has had such an enormous – hidden to most – role in world history. Its instructions on how to swing Western elections are especially important: the 2016 U.S. election ; Brexit ; " 100 years of Russian electoral interference "; Canada ; France ; the European Union ; Germany and many more. The awed reader must ask whether any Western election since Tolstoy's day can be trusted. Not to forget the Great Hawaiian Pizza Debate the Russians could start at any moment.

What can we know about The Playbook? For a start it must be written in Russian, a language that those crafty Russians insist on speaking among themselves. Secondly such an important document would be protected the way that highly classified material is protected. There would be a very restricted need to know; underlings participating in one of the many plays would not know how their part fitted into The Playbook; few would ever see The Playbook itself. The Playbook would be brought to the desk of the few authorised to see it by a courier, signed for, the courier would watch the reader and take away the copy afterwards. The very few copies in existence would be securely locked away; each numbered and differing subtly from the others so that, should a leak occur, the authorities would know which copy read by whom had been leaked. Printed on paper that could not be photographed or duplicated. As much protection as human cunning could devise; right up there with the nuclear codes .

So, The Russian Playbook would be extraordinarily difficult to get hold of. And yet every talking head on U.S. TV has a copy at his elbow! English copies, one assumes. Rachel Maddow has comprehended the complicated chapter on how to control the U.S. power system . Others have read the impenetrably complex section on how to control U.S. voting machines or change vote counts . Many are familiar with the lists of divisions in American society and directions for exploiting them . Adam Schiff has mastered the section on how to get Trump to give Alaska back . Susan Rice well knows the chapter "How to create riots in peaceful communities".

And so on. It's all quite ridiculous: we're supposed to believe that Moscow easily controls far-away countries but can't keep its neighbours under control.

There is no Russian Playbook, that's just projection. But there is a "playbook" and it's written in English, it's freely available and it's inexpensive enough that every pundit can have a personal copy: it's named " From Dictatorship To Democracy: A Conceptual Framework for Liberation " and it's written by Gene Sharp (1928-2018) . Whatever Sharp may have thought he was doing, whatever good cause he thought he was assisting, his book has been used as a guide to create regime changes around the world. Billed as "democracy" and "freedom", their results are not so benign. Witness Ukraine today. Or Libya. Or Kosovo whose long-time leader has just been indicted for numerous crimes . Curiously enough, these efforts always take place in countries that resist Washington's line but never in countries that don't. Here we do see training, financing, propaganda, discord being sown, divisions exploited to effect regime change – all the things in the imaginary "Russian Playbook". So, whatever he may have thought he was helping, Sharp's advice has been used to produce what only the propagandists could call " model interventions "; to the "liberated" themselves, the reality is poverty , destruction , war and refugees .

The Albert Einstein Institution , which Sharp created in 1983, strongly denies collusion with Washington-sponsored overthrows but people from it have organised seminars or workshops in many targets of U.S. overthrows . The most recent annual report of 2014 , while rather opaque, shows 45% of its income from "grants" (as opposed to "individuals") and has logos of Euromaidan, SOSVenezuela, Umbrellamovement , Lwili , Sunflowersquare and others. In short, the logos of regime change operations in Ukraine, Venezuela, Hong Kong, Burkina Faso and Taiwan. (And, ironically for today's USA, Black Lives Matter). So, clearly, there is some connection between the AEI and Washington-sponsored regime change operations.

So there is a "handbook" but it's not Russian.

Reading Sharp's book, however, makes one wonder if he was just fooling himself. Has there ever been a "dictatorship" overthrown by "non-violent" resistance along the lines of what he is suggesting? He mentions Norwegians who resisted Hitler; but Norway was liberated, along with the rest of Occupied Europe, by extremely violent warfare. While some Jews escaped, most didn't and it was the conquest of Berlin that saved the rest: the nazi state was killed . The USSR went away, together with its satellite governments in Europe but that was a top-down event. He likes Gandhi but Gandhi wouldn't have lasted a minute under Stalin. Otpor was greatly aided by NATO's war on Serbia. And, they're only "non-violent" because the Western media doesn't talk much about the violence ; "non-violent" is not the first word that comes to mind in this video of Kiev 2014 . "Colour revolutions" are manufactured from existing grievances, to be sure, but with a great deal of outside assistance, direction and funding; upon inspection, there's much design behind their "spontaneity". And, not infrequently, with mysterious sniping at a expedient moment – see Katchanovski's research on the "Heavenly Hundred" of the Maidan showing pretty convincingly that the shootings were " a false flag operation" involving "an alliance of the far right organizations, specifically the Right Sector and Svoboda, and oligarchic parties, such as Fatherland". There is little in Sharp's book to suggest that non-violent resistance would have had much effect on a really brutal and determined government. He also has the naïve habit of using "democrat" and "dictator" as if these words were as precisely defined as coconuts and codfish. But any "dictatorship" – for example Stalin's is a very complex affair with many shades of opinion in it. So, in terms of what he was apparently trying to do, one can see it only succeeding against rather mild "dictators" presiding over extremely unpopular polities. With a great deal of outside effort and resources.

His "playbook" is useful to outside powers that want to overthrow governments they don't like. Especially those run by "dictators" not brutal enough to shoot the protesters down. It's not Russian diplomats that are caught choosing the leaders of ostensibly independent countries . It's not Russians who boast of spending money in poor countries to change their governments . It's not Russian diplomats who meet with foreign opposition leaders . Russia doesn't fabricate a leader of a foreign country . It's not Russia that invents a humanitarian crisis , bombs the country to bits , laughs at its leader's brutal death and walks away. It's not Russia that sanctions numerous countries . It's not Russia that gives fellowships to foreign oppositionists . Even the Washington Post (one of the principals in sustaining Putindunnit hysteria) covered " The long history of the U.S. interfering with elections elsewhere "; but piously insisted "the days of its worst behavior are long behind it". Whatever the pundits may claim about Russia, the USA actually has an organisation devoted to interfering in other countries' business ; one of whose leading lights proudly boasted: " A lot of what we do today was done covertly 25 years ago by the CIA. "

The famous "Russian Playbook" is nothing but projection onto Moscow of what Washington actually does: projection is so common a feature of American propaganda that one may certain that when Washington accuses somebody else of doing something, it's a guarantee that Washington is doing it. Also by this author

Patrick Armstrong was an analyst in the Canadian Department of National Defence specialising in the USSR/Russia from 1984 and a Counsellor in the Canadian Embassy in Moscow in 1993-1996. He retired in 2008 and has been writing on Russia and related subjects on the Net ever since.

[Sep 27, 2020] PODCAST- Tribute to Andre Vltchek- "West's sadistic personality disorder" by Kevin Barrett

Sep 27, 2020 | www.unz.com

One of the most vibrantly alive people I met, André Vltchek, just died . Though he barely made it past his mid-fifties he got in a lot more living than a hundred average Americans who live to collect their pensions. Allah yarhamhu.

In honor of this great Truth Jihadi we're replaying this 2018 interview:

André Vltchek on West's sadistic personality disorder (originally broadcast May 2, 2018)

The West claims to be the "free world" -- the global leader in human rights, humanitarianism, and free expression. Globetrotting independent journalist André Vltchek , who joins us from Borneo, isn't buying it. His latest essay begins:

Western culture is clearly obsessed with rules, guilt, submissiveness and punishment.

By now it is clear that the West is the least free society on Earth. In North America and Europe, almost everyone is under constant scrutiny: people are spied on, observed, their personal information is being continually extracted, and the surveillance cameras are used indiscriminately.

Life is synchronized and managed. There are hardly any surprises.

One can sleep with whomever he or she wishes (as long as it is done within the 'allowed protocol'). Homosexuality and bisexuality are allowed. But that is about all; that is how far 'freedom' usually stretches.

Rebellion is not only discouraged, it is fought against, brutally. For the tiniest misdemeanors or errors, people end up behind bars. As a result, the U.S. has more prisoners per capita than any other country on Earth, except the Seychelles.

Andre Vltchek's latest book is : The Great October Socialist Revolution: Impact on the World and Birth of Internationalism

Information on his other books and films


Luther Blisst , says: September 23, 2020 at 11:21 pm GMT

Andre taunted rightwing elites and illness – with a passion. I guess one of them caught up.

Living hard seems like a death-wish, maybe it was. Staring at darkness messes people up and he traveled again and again into the hearts of darkness across the planet because he wanted to be a modern Wilfred Burchett. He was one of the greats. My condolences to his family and friends.

Peace to Stephen Cohen too. You both will be missed.

PetrOldSack , says: September 24, 2020 at 11:00 am GMT

André Vltchek was not an intellectual heavyweight. What is fascinating about his life-story is how and who financed. That should be easy for insiders to fish out, and insiders there be.

As to my humble opinion, Chomsky was neither. From all angles, his pre-fabricated prestige, his in-group attitudes, his encrusted prestance, pettiness, pedantry, always within convention, his factoid approach, the channels of communication, the lack of any systemic approach, his "good guys bad guys" copper´ approach, did not warrant the few hours listening in on his tune and omni-presence. His numb personality, contrary to the combative Vltchek is noted as a minor.

Some "intellectuals" have half a page of original content in them over the course of a life-time (not the same as career (n´est ce pas Pinker?)), most have none. "History repeat itself", through the bull-horns of public intellectuals. They both practiced a sort of journalism that is superficial (accent on the superficial) agenda driven.

They both are within the K. B. range.

No Friend Of The Devil , says: September 24, 2020 at 9:07 pm GMT

@Robert Konrad,

Ex-CIA John Kiriakou stated that the CIA was attempting to recruit just about anyone that they were able to starting in the sixties ranging from Hollywood actors/actresses, musicians, writers, journalists, artists, business people, just about anyone. Operation Mockingbird is still widely used even if it is no longer regerred to it as Operation Mockingbird.

brabantian , says: September 26, 2020 at 11:14 am GMT

André Vltchek (1962-2020) was the son of a Czech nuclear physicist father, and a Russian-Chinese artist-architect mother, born in Soviet-era St Petersburg (then Leningrad). He spent part of his childhood as well in the famous Czech beer city of Pilsen.

Here, an article where Vltchek talked about his roots, and his nostalgia for life under Communism in eastern Europe
https://www.chinadailyhk.com/article/134280#How-we-sold-Soviet-Union-and-Czechoslovakia-for-plastic-shopping-bags

Eulogy for André Vltchek by China expert Jeff J Brown

https://www.youtube.com/embed/EmCFRyDLDJU?feature=oembed

Adûnâi , says: Website September 26, 2020 at 2:12 pm GMT

Western culture is clearly obsessed with rules, guilt, submissiveness and punishment.

What culture is not? Every single population on Earth wants to survive, Westerners want non-Aryans to survive, but the mechanism is always the same. The Stasi, the Gestapo, the CIA, the KGB – they all breathed air, and they all tortured dissenters. Turkey was almost overthrown in 2016. The Shah of Iran was, as were Hosni Mubarak and Gaddafi in Egypt and Libya. Bashar is facing quite a lot of criticism for being free – that critique comes in the form of bombs and jihadi freedom fighters. The Saudi Prince is wise for strangling and beheading Khashoggi. The USSR disintegrated after they had shut down the GULAG.

As a result, the U.S. has more prisoners per capita than any other country on Earth, except the Seychelles.

In 2012, the U.S. Committee for Human Rights in [the DPR of Korea] estimated 150,000 to 200,000 are incarcerated, based on testimonies of defectors from the state police bureau, which roughly equals 600–800 people incarcerated per 100,000.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_incarceration_rate

The World Prison Brief puts the United States' incarceration rate at 655 per 100,000.

Anon [790] Disclaimer , says: September 26, 2020 at 5:27 pm GMT

Okay. If the West is the least free society on the planet, why the heck do all these third-world people keep trying to move there? It is plain that Vltchek's thinking flunks the real-world reality test.

The reality is, the rest of the world is worse off than the West, or people wouldn't keep trying to leave the third world for the West.

Robert Konrad , says: September 27, 2020 at 12:50 am GMT
@Anon ey want to have freedom of their stupid religious beliefs, not freedom from religion. They still don't know that freedom of religion is not worth anything if it also doesn't guarantee freedom from religion.

Thomas Jefferson tried very hard to explain this to them, but Yankee morons have never learned what Jefferson tried to teach them. (With some notable exceptions, though, who, however, have absolutely no political power.)

Vltchek is/was right: American/Western civilization [sic] (siphilization, rather) is bankrupt and inhuman. It can only offer an abundance of material goods and military weapons as if the only goals of human life were material things and warfare.

[Sep 27, 2020] Neoliberalisn means war: two neoliberal state clash in disputed Nagono-Karabakh: Armenia Orders 'Full Troop Mobilization' Against Azerbaijan As Tanks Clash, Martial Law Declared

So a NATO member -- Turkey is supporting Azerbaijan while Russia supports Armenia. Yet another proxy war?
Sep 27, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Sunday saw huge clashes erupt between the armies of Armenia and Azerbaijan along the already militarized and disputed Nagorno-Karabakh border region. An official state of war in the region has been declared by Yerevan.

"Early in the morning, around 7 a.m. the Azerbaijani forces launched a large-scale aggression, including missile attacks..." Armenia's Defense Ministry stated Sunday. Armenia has since reportedly declared martial law and a "total military mobilization" in what looks to be the most serious escalation between the two countries in years.

Tank warfare unfolding Sunday. Armenian Defense Ministry produced footage (still frame) of attack on Azeri positions.

Air and artillery attacks from both sides ramped up, with each side blaming the other for the start of hostilities, while international powers urge calm. Crucially, civilians have already been killed on either side by indiscriminate shelling . At least a dozen soldiers on either side have also been reported killed.

Armenia's high command has ordered all troops throughout the country to muster and report to their bases : "I invite the soldiers appointed in the forces to appear before their military commissions in the regions," a statement said.

Armenia's military has released footage of significant tank warfare in progress. The below is said to be Armenian army forces destroying Azerbaijani tanks:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/-mJffVrtPLk

And here's more from Sunday's fighting:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/D2jd1bw0AXQ?start=9

The recent conflict hearkens back to 2016, but before that to post-Soviet times. Christian Armenia and Muslim Azerbaijan fought a war at that time in which at least 200 people were killed over Armenian ethnic breakaway Nagorno Karabakh, which declared independence in 1991, despite being internationally recognized as within Azerbaijan territory .

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The first war for the territory finished in 1994, but the region has been militarized since, amid sporadic shelling.

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Dozens of civilians have already been injured Sunday in the major flare-up of fighting, as CNN reports :

While Armenia said it was responding to missile attacks launched by its neighbor Sunday, Azerbaijan blamed Armenia for the clashes.

In response to the alleged firing of projectiles by Azerbaijan, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan tweeted that his country had "shot down 2 helicopters & 3 UAVs, destroyed 3 tanks."

Multiple dramatic battlefield videos are circulating on social media confirming the large-scale deployment of tanks, artillery units, and airpower . Multiple Azerbaijani soldiers have been reported killed, but it's as yet unclear what casualty numbers could be.

Turkey's role in new fighting is attracting scrutiny. Its foreign ministry blamed Armenia and called for it to halt military operations, however, it hardly appears to be a mere outside or 'neutral' observer, given new widespread reports Turkey has transferred 'Syrian rebel' units to join the fighting on Azerbaijan's side .

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These reports of Turkish supplied Syrian mercenaries began days ago, in what regional analysts predicted would be a huge escalation in hostilities in the Caucuses.

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan late in the day slammed Turkey's meddling in the conflict . Ankara had called Armenia "an obstacle" to peace after the fresh hostilities broke out. Yerevan has now formally confirmed Turkey is supplying fighters .

Via BBC

Given the number of vital oil and gas infrastructure facilities and pipelines in the region , impact on global markets could be seen as early as Monday.

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"At least 16 military and several civilians were killed on Sunday in the heaviest clashes between Armenia and Azerbaijan since 2016, reigniting concern about stability in the South Caucasus, a corridor for pipelines carrying oil and gas to world markets," Reuters reports.

Azerbaijan has also declared an official state of martial law while clashes between the armies are unfolding.

Meanwhile footage has emerged showing Armenia's nationwide mustering of its national and reserve forces :

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Unverified footage of frontline fighting into the night:

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-4&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1310273042929590274&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com%2Fgeopolitical%2Farmenia-declares-war-martial-law-effect-tank-warfare-azerbaijan-erupts-disputed&siteScreenName=zerohedge&theme=light&widgetsVersion=219d021%3A1598982042171&width=550px

"Pipelines shipping Caspian oil and natural gas from Azerbaijan to the world pass close to Nagorno-Karabakh," Reuters reports. "Armenia also warned about security risks in the South Caucasus in July after Azerbaijan threatened to attack Armenia's nuclear power plant as possible retaliation ."

The fighting is expected to grow fiercer along front lines in the disputed region into the night as the prospect of a full 'state of war' is looming between the historic rivals.


[Sep 27, 2020] A note about neoliberal intelligencia

Sep 27, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

by Tyler Durden Sun, 09/27/2020 - 16:40 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print

Authored by Eric Zuesse via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

On September 11th, Gallup headlined "Bias in Others' News a Greater Concern Than Bias in Own News" , and reported (based upon polling a randomized sample of 20,046 American adults) that:

" 69% of Americans say they are more concerned about bias in the news other people consume than its presence in their own news (29%) ."

In other words: 69/29, or 2.38 times, as many Americans are closed-minded (prejudiced) regarding information-sources which don't fit their ideology, than are not. Overwhelmingly in America, only Democratic Party information-sources are trusted by Democrats, and only Republican information-sources are trusted by Republicans. Each side distrusts the other's information-sources. Gallup's news-report aptly noted the important fact that "This plays into the political polarization in the U.S. national discourse ."

The more prejudiced a population are, the more polarized it will be. Of course, one would expect this to be the case, but Gallup has now found striking new empirical evidence for it -- that the public's closed-mindedness is greatly increasing America's political polarization. Each side is craving propaganda instead of truth, but each side's voters want only the type of propaganda that is funded by the billionaires who also fund that side's politicians and control that side's 'news' media. Consequently, American politics is controlled by the conflict between liberal billionaires versus conservative billionaires -- totally controlled by billionaires (instead of by the public). There is the liberal herd, and the conservative herd, but they're both herds -- not by the public in an actual democracy. And each of these two herds is controlled by its shepherd, who are its billionaires. ( Here is how that's done. ) Billionaires control each Party and thereby control the Government. This is why the Government ignores the preferences of America's public . As will be shown here, the September 11th Gallup findings help to explain how and why that results.

Neither Democrats nor Republicans can become exposed to the other side's evidence and arguments unless they see those -- the other side's evidence and arguments, both for its own case and against the opposite side's case (i.e., against the case that oneself believes). Not to see the opposite side's viewpoint is to be blind to it, and thus to become locked into whatever oneself believes. This 69/29 is like a jury's rendering its verdict and nearly three quarters of the jurors having not listened to -- and thus not considered -- the opposite side's presentations. That's a frightening situation to exist in any court of law, and it is an equally frightening situation to exist in any nation's electorate.

As a consequence of Americans' strong tendency to be closed-minded, America's politics are, to a very large extent, driven more by prejudices than by the realities that the public are actually facing. Individuals are seeking for sources that will likeliest confirm what they already believe, and are seeking to avoid sources that are the likeliest to disconfirm their beliefs. This is consequently a population that's highly vulnerable to being manipulated, by playing up to, and amplifying, the given Party's propaganda, to which the given individual already subscribes. Republican Party billionaires (by their use of their conservative newsmedia and think tanks, etc., which they control) can easily manipulate Republican Party voters, and Democratic Party billionaires can, likewise, easily manipulate Democratic Party voters, by their liberal media, think tanks, etc. That's billionaires, on each of the two sides, guiding each of the two Parties' voters; and, therefore, the nation is an aristocracy -- a country which is controlled by its wealthiest few -- instead of an authentic democracy (which is controlled not by the numbers of dollars, but actually by the numbers of residents, each one of whom is independently and open-mindedly seeking for credibly documented facts). An aristocracy rules any such land.

The public are not the rulers in such a nation. It's not a democracy; it is a collective dictatorship, by its billionaires (its aristocracy).

Both of the two Parties' voters vote in accord with their billionaires' agenda, but especially in accord with whatever is on the agenda that's shared by both liberal and conservative billionaires -- billionaires fund both of the national Parties: Democrats and Republicans , and thereby control both Parties. Billionaires, in each Party, have their very golden, very heavy, thumbs, pressing down hard upon the scale of any such 'democracy', such that regardless of which group of billionaires ends up winning any ultimate election, the public inevitably will lose, because it's really just a contest between billionaires, who are stage-managing the nation's entire political proceedings. This is like two boxers fighting in a ring, in which the selection-process which placed them there was corrupt; and, so, even if the ultimate winner is not equally corruptly pre-determined, the final result has nonetheless already been rigged (during the primaries). When the contenders have been selected by a corrupt process, the ultimate outcome cannot be a democracy.

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This happens not only regarding elections, but regarding particular issues. For example, in 2002 and 2003, "regime-change in Iraq," and "Saddam's WMD," were just as much agendas of liberal billionaires' media and think tanks as they were of conservative billionaires' media and think tanks (and were thoroughly based on lies ); so, a closed-minded public were actually trapped, into the lies that were agreed-upon by both sides of the domestic American political spectrum -- the sides that are funded and controlled by the liberal billionaires, and by the conservative billionaires. The nearly $2 trillion cost of the invasion and military occupation of that country , and the consequent destruction of that country , were done for America's billionaires, and produced nothing for the American people except that enormous public debt and those injuries and deaths to America's soldiers and to Iraqis. And that's typical, nowadays, in this (just as in any) aristocracy: the aristocracy are served; the nation's public serve to them. (In the U.S., this has caused "U.S. Satisfaction at 13%, Lowest in Nine Years" , as Gallup headlined on 4 August 2020; and it has caused Americas' satisfaction with their Government to have ranged from its all-time low of only 7% in 2008, to its all-time high of only 45% at the very start of 2020 -- well below 50%, for as long as Gallup has surveyed this.)

What all of the billionaires want is what the American public get as their Government. It's bipartisanship amongst its billionaires. That's what produces this Government's policies. It's what determines the Government that Americans get. However, what is basic in making it a dictatorship of the aristocracy-type (such as this America is) is that the population is very prejudiced, not open-minded -- not each individual constantly seeking solid evidence to change one's mind about how society works (what the reality in the nation actually is), so as for one's view to become increasingly accurate over time. Instead, one's myths are constantly being fed. Such a public, as this, are not individuals, in a democracy, but more like mobs, very manipulable .

Often, America's bipartisan views are based upon lies that virtually all billionaires want the public to believe. In such cases -- and these instances are frequent -- the truth is being simply ignored, or else outright denied, by both sides (and by the media, for both sides). Individuals' prejudices are thus being increased, instead of reduced, by what the public see and hear in "the news." Everyone has prejudices, and truth can predominate only if people are constantly skeptical of the sources that they are relying upon -- constantly trying to root out and replace whatever false beliefs they have. This is the essence of scientific method. Democracy depends upon it. Aristocracy requires the opposite. America has the opposite.

Change away from this present situation, to a democracy, would be difficult. On both of America's political sides, there needs to be far less trust of the Establishment (including its politicians, its media, its think tanks, etc.), in order for any real democracy to become able to exist. It's not even able to exist now. And, therefore, it does not exist .

But what is even more depressing is that America's educational system, most especially its colleges and universities, are encouraging, instead of discouraging, this situation, this closed-mindedness. The more educated an American is, the more closed-minded that person becomes -- as is further shown in this same September 11th Gallup news-report :

" Whereas 52% of Americans with a high school education or less are more concerned about bias in others' news than in their own [and 45% of that minimally educated group think that the news which they are reading might be biased] , the figure is 64% among those with some college education and is even higher among college graduates (73%) and those with postgraduate education (77%) [and only 22% of that maximally educated group think that the news which they are reading might be biased]."

The most-educated Americans are the most-manipulable (the most closed-minded) Americans.

No finding in this Gallup report was as extreme as the finding that the more highly educated an American is, the less open that person is likely to be to changing his or her mind (outlook) about the situation. In other words: the more educated an American is, the more closed-minded that person tends to become . Higher education in America increases, instead of decreases, an individual's closed-mindedness. However, other contrasts which were almost as extreme are:

"Those who identify as liberal (80%) are more concerned than conservatives (68%) and moderates (65%) with other people's media bias. "

In other words: liberals are 80/65 or 1.23 times as closed-minded as are moderates, and are 80/68 or 1.18 times as closed-minded as conservatives are.

"While 58% of Black adults are more concerned about bias in others' news than in their own, fully 73% of Asian Americans and 72% of White adults say the same ."

Thus, African-Americans are 58/72.5 or 80% as closed-minded as are Euro-Americans and Asian-Americans.

This is the worst combination possible: it's a closed-minded population, which is especially closed-minded amongst its most educated segment. The leading segment is also the most closed-minded segment. These are crucial agents of the billionaires, and they crucially inculcate into the next generation of Americans the aristocracy's values.

This means that the leaders keep themselves, conceptually, inside a cocoon. They have minimal contact with the most vulnerable members of the society, which is the less-educated members. That enhances inequality of opportunity, throughout the society. Since the most-highly-educated Americans are the group that are the most-closed to opinions which are contrary to their own, it's easy for the most-highly-educated Americans to view individuals who disagree with those persons' views as being simply a "basket of deplorables." Their disagreement then becomes their contempt.

'Facts' about politics are -- for those persons, highly educated persons -- more derived from their values and priorities, than their values and priorities are derived from the political facts. Scientific epistemology is being turned upside-down, regarding political issues, in such a country. Overwhelmingly, some sort of faith, instead of any sort of science, determines what individuals in such a country believe about politics. In every aristocracy, this is the way that both conservative and liberal persons view any persons in the general public who oppose themselves: they're viewed as being a "basket of deplorables." It's the very essence of elitism -- on both sides. (For prominent examples of this: both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump had contempt for each-others' voters -- blotted them out.)

The leadership's minimal contact with the public makes exceedingly unlikely the leadership's compassion, concern about the sufferings that they, themselves, are causing down below. Actually, though every aristocracy claims to want to improve conditions for their public, the reality is that whenever doing that would entail their own losing power, that claim becomes exposed to be sheer hypocrisy -- a lie; often a self-deception, and not merely a deception against the public. Deceiving themselves about their own decency is easy, because they have minimal contact with the most vulnerable members of the society, the very people whom they claim to care the most about (and to be working in politics to help). Fakery is built into each and every aristocracy. Americans' strong tendency to be closed-minded causes the aristocratic con to be widely accepted as if it were instead truth. (Again: the "WMD in Iraq" con was a good example of this -- the aristocracy's media just blocked-out the reality .) Scientific studies have even demonstrated that the wealthier a person is, the less compassion the individual tends to have for people who are suffering.

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Furthermore, since the less-educated persons aspire to be more-educated, they are -- even without knowing it -- aspiring to become less open to contrary views, instead of to become more open to such views. One bad consequence of this is: it strangulates imaginativeness, openness, and creativity, in favor of being rote, rigid, and bureaucratic. Another bad consequence of it is that the authority-figures, in such a society, are, in some important ways, actually inferior to the rest of the population. Moreover, America's colleges and universities are not increasing their students' open-mindedness (as they should) but the exact opposite -- they are reducing their students' open-mindedness. Even if professors are teaching some truths, the professors are training their students to be authoritarian, instead of to be open to a more truthful, comprehensive, and deeper understanding, which encompasses those truths, but also many more -- which the majority of professors either ignore or else deny, because such deeper understanding violates the existing Scripture, or standard viewpoint (shaped by both sides' billionaires). At least in the United States, this is now the normal situation. That Gallup poll showed it not merely weakly, nor even only moderately, but extremely.

This is a perverse situation, which bodes ill for the future of the entire nation. Any country which is like this is not only an aristocracy instead of a democracy, but it is greatly disadvantaged, going forward. It will be disadvantaged both in the arts and in the sciences. Its future will be stultifying, instead of dynamic. Aristocracies tend to be this way. Also, because it will remain highly polarized, its internal ideological frictions will waste a large proportion of the nation's efforts. As a nation, its forward-motion, its progress , will thus largely be crippled, by its internal discord and distrust, between the two warring factions of its aristocracy -- and friction between the respective followers on each side.

This describes a declining culture -- a nation that is in decline.

That's what this poll-report, from Gallup, indicates, as clearly as any poll-findings can.

It indicates a nation in decline.

During the Presidential primaries in the Democratic Party, a major point of difference between the two major candidates, Joe Biden versus Bernie Sanders, was whether billionaires are bad for the country: Biden said no; Sanders said yes. (This was a major reason why the billionaires made sure that Sanders would lose .) In any country where wealth-inequality is so extreme, there can be no authentic democracy. America's extreme inequality of wealth makes democracy impossible in this country. America's other problems follow from that. In reality, it's a one-party state, and that party is controlled not actually by the counts of voters, but by the counts of dollars. It is an aristocracy; and its decline -- to what has been documented here -- follows from that fact. Whatever democracy America might once have had is gone now. It has become replaced by a land of mass-deceptions, which are bought and sold.

[Sep 27, 2020] Looks like Washington is simply playing for time

Sep 27, 2020 | www.unz.com

Beckow , says: September 27, 2020 at 12:39 am GMT

@vot tak – Russia could stop transit through Ukraine tomorrow and switch to LNG and existing underwater pipelines. The fact that they have not done it and signed a limited 5-year deal for 2020-2024 suggests that either Russia doesn't want to do it or it is a political concession to its customers (Germany)

You are right that NS2 theatre by Washington is simply playing for time – they know that they can't really prevail. But it is larger than that: their whole strategy is to delay and postpone. They are trying to delay the inevitable or are hoping for a miracle. But strategically they have lost. Water flows downstream, it is only a question of how fast.

TG , says: September 26, 2020 at 3:01 pm GMT

A very interesting post. I might quibble with some of the finer points, but yes, the world has gone stark raving bonkers.

The Russians are NOT ten feet tall, and the Americans – for all of the idiocy of the ruling elites – still have many strengths, and no matter how badly employed, these strengths will not disappear in a day. Russia might yet get pulled down, if they are unlucky or the elites are corrupted by money.

But there is one difference between the Americans and the Russians that, long term, may be the single biggest factor: more than hypersonic missiles or all of that. It's that, for now at least, the Russian elites can learn from experience, and the Americans, can not (or will not, but same thing).

Consider: after the Soviet Union fell, Russian forces got their tails whipped by the Chechens. The Russians rethought their approach, and in a rematch Russia scored not just a military victory, but an enduring strategic victory: they accomplished their policy goals! A goal that was not just spreading chaos and instability! When was the last time the United States did something like that? Maybe Korea in the 1950's.

Realist , says: September 26, 2020 at 3:09 pm GMT
@Ann Nonny Mouse

I'm waiting impatiently for the collapse of the US dollar, hope to live to see it.

Me too the price of gold will go through the roof.

The Spirit of Enoch Powell , says: September 26, 2020 at 3:13 pm GMT
@Mustapha Mond

The Taliban in Afghanistan and the 'rag-tag' North Vietnamese who successfully fought the Vietnam War might disagree with you .

You can't really use those examples as a way of finalising the inferiority of the Western armed forces vis-à-vis Russia as the latter also did not manage to defeat the Afghans and would likely have been made a mincemeat of by the VC as well.

Russia's performance in Chechnya was also not that great considering the power differential.

[Sep 26, 2020] From Conflict to Crisis - The Danger of U.S. Actions by Jeanne M. Haskin

A brilliant book !
Sep 26, 2020 | www.amazon.com

The rich understand that capitalism is a game of musical chairs. It's systemic class warfare conducted on a grand scale to discourage solidarity across lines that might otherwise threaten the system, and with each market re-set arranged by the Federal Reserve, more of the country's resources fall into wealthy hands.

Examining what happens when a society favors old money over new and breaks all the rules to make the world safe for finance, author Jeanne Haskin predicts increasing volatility and violence in the United States if we do not significantly change course.

For a preview of what lies ahead for the U.S., the author takes us for a quick exemplary trip through Central America.

A society that is reared on competition will face unsettling challenges to authority if it doesn't set certain functions outside the arena of battle, via systematic enrichment of the affluent minority that has always had the power to topple and ruin the system.

Today's preoccupation with America's revolutionary history is not just a piece of theater. At the heart of America's outrage is an inability to lash out and demand redemption from the source of its distress because the pain is inflicted, not by hatred, but by the fundamental lack of stability built into our way of life.

Now that a fifth of the population is suffering job loss, foreclosures, or exclusion from employment due to prejudice, poor credit, a lack of skills or education, a glut of competition and insufficient opportunity, the failure to provide for the helpless majority means the system is at an impasse. Because the system can't or won't perform, the Tea Party's rise was preemptive with all its implied violence and 'real' American theater as the means to channel our anger into voting out Obama so reform can proceed unimpeded...with all its inherent dangers.

After reviewing some foreign examples that erupted in the environments of colonialism and post-colonialism, neoliberalism, militarism and oligarchies, the author filters through the head-spinning social and political noise that stands in for responsible debate in America today. Ms. Haskin's richly documented essay sees a bonfire prepared as social tensions are increased and inter-group pressures are encouraged to mount. So much for "One nation..."

Title Pagev
Table of Contentsxi
Introduction1
Chapter One- Unearthing the Bones7
Chapter Two- Instilling the Illusion of Choice19
Chapter Three- Political Strategizing23
Chapter Four- Behavioral Economics27
Chapter Five- Favoring Old Money over New33
Chapter Six- Making the World Safe for Finance39
Chapter Seven- The Colonial History of Belize51
Chapter Eight- Belize -- Party Politics and Debt65
Chapter Nine- Belize -- Recommendations of the IMF83
Chapter Ten- Nicaragua 1522–193991
Chapter Eleven- Nicaragua -- The Somoza Dynasty107
Chapter Twelve- Nicaragua -- Opposition to the Sandinistas119
Chapter Thirteen- Nicaragua -- Implementing Neoliberalism133
Chapter Fourteen- El Salvador -- The Military and the Oligarchy151
Chapter Fifteen- El Salvador -- The War and Its Aftermath165
Chapter Sixteen- Honduras -- Land of Instability179
Chapter Seventeen- Honduras -- The Impact of the Contras191
Chapter Eighteen- Fast-Forward to a Volatile USA205
Bibliography227
Index25

[Sep 26, 2020] The origin of Full Spectrum Dominance Doctrine

Sep 26, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Anatol Lieven's recent piece, How the west lost , describes this moral defeat of the 'west' after its dubious 'victory' in the cold war:

Accompanying this overwhelmingly dominant political and economic ideology was an American geopolitical vision equally grandiose in ambition and equally blind to the lessons of history. This was summed up in the memorandum on "Defence Planning Guidance 1994-1999," drawn up in April 1992 for the Bush Senior administration by Under-Secretary of Defence Paul Wolfowitz and Lewis "Scooter" Libby, and subsequently leaked to the media. Its central message was:
...
While that 1992 Washington paper spoke of the "legitimate interests" of other states, it clearly implied that it would be Washington that would define what interests were legitimate, and how they could be pursued. And once again, though never formally adopted, this "doctrine" became in effect the standard operating procedure of subsequent administrations. In the early 2000s, when its influence reached its most dangerous height, military and security elites would couch it in the terms of "full spectrum dominance." As the younger President Bush declared in his State of the Union address in January 2002, which put the US on the road to the invasion of Iraq: "By the grace of God, America won the Cold War A world once divided into two armed camps now recognises one sole and pre-eminent power, the United States of America."

But that power has since failed in the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan, during the 2008 financial crisis and now again in the pandemic.

[Sep 26, 2020] A deal may be possible if the United States is ready to coordinate a new document on the basis of the balance of interests, parity and without expecting Russia to make unilateral concessions

Sep 26, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 , Sep 22 2020 22:55 utc | 37

An excellent look into the seemingly mundane but important business of negotiating arms control agreements is offered here: Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov's interview with the newspaper Kommersant, published on September 22, 2020 . Excerpt:

"For our part, we more than once described a balanced and mutually acceptable framework for future agreements in this sphere during our contacts with the American negotiators. Aware of the difficulties on the path forward in light of how widely different our approaches are, we proposed extending the New START as it was originally signed.

"We do not want any unilateral advantages, but we will not make any unilateral concessions either. A deal may be possible if the United States is ready to coordinate a new document on the basis of the balance of interests, parity and without expecting Russia to make unilateral concessions. But this will take time. We can have time to do this if the treaty is extended."

As predicted, the Outlaw US Empire makes an offer it knows will be refused so it can then blame Russia for being an unreliable negotiating partner--a trick we've all seen before.

Lavrov conducted a short interview with Sputnik mostly about Belarus and Ukraine and much of which is a rehash.

[Sep 26, 2020] What is predatory capitalism

Highly recommended!
Sep 26, 2020 | www.amazon.com

Extracted from: From Conflict to Crisis- The Danger of U.S. Actions by Jeanne M. Haskin

CHAPTER TWO: INSTILLING THE ILLUSION OF CHOICE

Selfishness may be exalted as the root and branch of capitalism, but it doesn't make you look good to the party on the receiving end or those whose sympathy he earns. For that, you need a government prepared to do four things, which each have separate dictums based on study, theorization, and experience. Coercion: Force is illegitimate only if you can't sell it. Persuasion: How do I market thee? Let me count the ways. Bargaining: If you won't scratch my back, then how about a piece of the pie? Indoctrination: Because I said so. (And paid for the semantics.)

Predatory capitalism is the control and expropriation of land, labor, and natural resources by a foreign government via coercion, persuasion, bargaining, and indoctrination.

At the coercive stage, we can expect military and/or police intervention to repress the subject populace. The persuasive stage will be marked by clientelism, in which a small percentage of the populace will be rewarded for loyalty, often serving as the capitalists' administrators, tax collectors, and enforcers. At the bargaining stage, efforts will be made to include the populace, or a certain percentage of it, in the country's ruling system, and this is usually marked by steps toward democratic (or, more often, autocratic) governance.

At the fourth stage, the populace is educated by capitalists, such that they continue to maintain a relationship of dependency.

The Predatory Debt Link

In many cases, post-colonial states were forced to assume the debts of their colonizers. And where they did not, they were encouraged to become in debt to the West via loans that were issued through international institutions to ensure they did not fall prey to communism or pursue other economic policies that were inimical to the West. Debt is the tie that binds nation states to the geostrategic and economic interests of the West.

As such, the Cold War era was a time of easy credit, luring postcolonial states to undertake the construction of useless monoliths and monuments, and to even expropriate such loans through corruption and despotism, thereby making these independent rulers as predatory as colonizers. While some countries were wiser than others and did use the funds for infrastructural improvements, these were also things that benefited the West and particularly Western contractors. In his controversial work Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, John Perkins reveals that he was a consultant for an American firm (MAIN), whose job was to ensure that states became indebted beyond their means so they would remain loyal to their creditors, buying them votes within United Nations organizations, among other things.

Predatory capitalists demand export-orientations as the means to generate foreign currency with which to pay back debt. In the process, the state must privatize and drastically slash or eliminate any domestic subsidies which are aimed at helping native industry compete in the marketplace. Domestic consumption and imports must be radically contained, as shown by the exchange rate policies recommended by the IMF. The costs of obtaining domestic capital will be pushed beyond the reach of most native producers, while wages must be depressed to an absolute bare minimum. In short, the country's land, labor, and natural resources must be sold at bargain basement prices in order to make these goods competitive, in what one author has called "a spiraling race to the bottom," as countries producing predominantly the same goods engage in cutthroat competition whose benefactor is the West.

Under these circumstances, foreign investment is encouraged, but this, too, represents a loaded situation for countries that open their markets to financial liberalization.

[Sep 26, 2020] Galloway- Lying industry may be the only sector of Western economies still in full production TAXPAYERS pay for it

Highly recommended!
Sep 26, 2020 | www.rt.com

If you have ever wondered why Syrian jihadists, or so-called 'moderate opposition', got support from the woke liberal West, a recent leak by Anonymous reveals it's because Western governments funded this propaganda.

In the end, it is the sheer childishness of the propaganda which amazes me most, not that our rulers lie about other countries – I have always known that. But somehow there was a kernel of truth around which the web of lies was spun, for example about life in the old Soviet Union.

I began to realise the scope of Western ability to literally invent the most baseless lies only in the run-up to the Iraq War in 2003, and only because I knew more about Iraq than any politician in Britain or America and ten times more than the average made-up telly-dolly chuntering through their auto-cued war propaganda. The women presenters weren't any better.

This all came flooding back to me when I received an email from Anonymous earlier this week and then read Ben Norton's excellent analysis of it all in The GrayZone.

If anyone ever wondered how the hordes of head-chopping throat-cutting heart-eating gay-murdering women-hating 'Jihadists' of the Syrian War ever managed to get a fair press in a 'woke' liberal West that gets hot under the lace collar about JK Rowling novels, the answers are all in the Anonymous leak . The principle answer is that you, the taxpayer, paid for it.

That's right. The blizzard of 'White Helmets' (who made it right up to the Oscars to thank everyone who'd helped them except those that had helped them the most), "chemical-weapons attacks" and all the paraphernalia of a newly "moderate opposition" in Syria – was all paid for by YOU. Millions of pounds of British taxpayers' money was revealed to have been spent secretly on UK support for the throat-cutting coalition of chaos, which for a decade massacred its way across Syria wearing a snow-white Western beard of respectability.

It would appear that while the US (or rather its milk-cows in the Gulf) was paying for the lethal-weapons, perfidious Albion was doing what it does best – lying through its teeth whilst making those being lied to, pay for the privilege. Now that – thanks to the leaks – we know this, it should put us on guard for the next one. Yet somehow it doesn't, at least not for the purveyors of the news.

The Lazarus-like resurrection (and photo-shoot) of Russia's opposition figure and Western darling Alexey Navalny after yet another alleged Novichok (believed to be 5-8 times more toxic than VX nerve agent) attack without so much as a tracheostomy to show for it is swallowed whole in yet another anti-Russian public relations offensive.

ALSO ON RT.COM Caitlin Johnstone: MSM smear merchants target critics of Establishment China narratives

Grown sane men call my television show to talk about 'concentration camps' in China in which, we are told, "a million Uighur Muslims" are being held and forcibly sterilised. This is despite the allegations being largely based on studies backed by the American government and statements by Western media favourite, German researcher Adrian Zenz. Zenz, who is part of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, a US-backed advocacy group, believes that he is "led by God" on his "mission" against China. Meanwhile, according to China's official statistics the Uighur population in Xinjiang province increased by over 25 percent between 2010 and 2018, while the Han Chinese rose by only two percent.

The lying industry may be the only sector of the Western economies still in full production. No need for furlough or bounce-back loans. The lie-machines never still. No smoke is usually detected from their chimneys, but inside, their pants are well and truly on fire.

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.


[Sep 26, 2020] I see that the German Parliament has NOT TAKEN its red pills these days and is reluctant to swallow the BS.

Notable quotes:
"... On rules based disorder and the capitulation of Merkel and her BND lapdogs to the 'hate Russia' fulminations of the UKUSA morons. I see that the German Parliament has NOT TAKEN its red pills these days and is reluctant to swallow the BS. ..."
Sep 26, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

uncle tungsten , Sep 22 2020 22:53 utc | 36

On rules based disorder and the capitulation of Merkel and her BND lapdogs to the 'hate Russia' fulminations of the UKUSA morons. I see that the German Parliament has NOT TAKEN its red pills these days and is reluctant to swallow the BS. It would be satisfying to see the collective wisdom of the Parliament to exceed that of the BND. But then that is a low bar.

[Sep 25, 2020] The End Of The 'Rules Based International Order'

Notable quotes:
"... Accompanying this overwhelmingly dominant political and economic ideology was an American geopolitical vision equally grandiose in ambition and equally blind to the lessons of history. This was summed up in the memorandum on "Defence Planning Guidance 1994-1999," drawn up in April 1992 for the Bush Senior administration by Under-Secretary of Defence Paul Wolfowitz and Lewis "Scooter" Libby ..."
"... In the early 2000s, when its influence reached its most dangerous height, military and security elites would couch it in the terms of "full spectrum dominance." ..."
"... Bhadrakumar describes how the 'west', through its own behavior, created a mighty block that now opposes its dictates. He concludes ..."
"... Quintessentially, Russia and China contest a set of neoliberal practices that have evolved in the post-World War 2 international order validating selective use of human rights as a universal value to legitimise western intervention in the domestic affairs of sovereign states. On the other hand, they also accept and continuously affirm their commitment to a number of fundamental precepts of the international order -- in particular, the primacy of state sovereignty and territorial integrity, the importance of international law, and the centrality of the United Nations and the key role of the Security Council. ..."
"... The rules are follow the dictates of our western neo-colonial institutions like the World Bank, the IMF et all. ..."
"... Its a pretty simple concept backed by the attack dog of the US military. ..."
"... 'Rules based order' was always a euphemism for exceptionalism of one kind or another. The term was invented to avoid having to say 'rule of law', which invited criticism because even the most minimal amount of law (such as Geneva conventions, ICC etc) was rejected in practice and in policy by the leading members of the actually existing world order. ..."
"... Rumor says the "Wolfowitz Doctrine" also envisioned the balkanization of Russia (the document is still classified, but it leaked to a NYT journalist at the time, who published a report on it). ..."
"... It is not over in the sense that the West hasn't given up in its attempts to take over the world. But as the "exceptionalist" western countries decline, they will go even crazier and crazier and there will be full blown hysteria. ..."
"... In this sense, the rule based order will be over as there will be only disorder and animalistic, crazed western rage and bullying. The West is like a trapped animal. It will start pouncing, raging and snarling like a wild animal. This is the real nature of the West. A hungry wild animal that needs to feed. ..."
"... But behind the liberal mask, there are hateful eyes and gnashing teeth, and hunger and greed for other people's resources. ..."
"... Expressed in words, the West's face says "I'm the best and you are nothing! Give me your stuff! And this is how it will forever be!" ..."
"... As Putin has said, the US is no longer agreement capable. ..."
"... Instead of bringing Russia into the Western liberal democracies (with the threat of major nuclear war now drastically reduced) the now Anglo-Zionist Empire just looted it. ..."
"... Actually the Trump Administration has done far more against Russia than all US administrations from the last 30 years. Do not listen what they say, look at what they do. Right now the US in a full blown Cold War with Russia with ever increasing attacks ..."
"... Rules based international order .... the U.S. functions as the the Supreme Court for the U.N. , 'we have invoked snapback sanctions and extended the arms embargo on Iran indefinitely and are enforcing it'. UN, 'but your vote failed'. ..."
"... Rules based International Order is the dog whistle for global private finance controlled economies. It is sad that we are in a civilization war with China/Russia about who runs international finance going forward and yet there is no discussion of the subject but instead all sorts of proxy conflicts. ..."
"... The US is not just facing relative decline -- the fact that others are catching up in key ways. The US is also facing absolute decline -- the fact that it is suffering a degradation of capacities and is losing competitive battles in key areas. Examples of absolute decline include the Russian and Chinese military-technological revolutions based on anti-ship and hypersonic missiles and air defense systems; Chinese 5G; China's demonstrative success in suppressing COVID and its overall manufacturing power; the declining quality of life for most Americans; and the collapse of American institutional competence. ..."
"... Related to this, we can't separate these dynamics from the political economy of the states in question. China, in particular, is showing that an interventionist state, with high levels of public ownership, is essential to qualitative power, human security, and economic and social development. ..."
"... Psssst, learning Russian is easier than Chinese and we already know a few Russian words, such as novichok. ..."
"... Russia after the Cold War was a shambles and today it remains a weak economy with a limited role on the world stage, concerned mainly with retaining some of its traditional areas of influence. China is a vastly more formidable competitor. If the US (and the UK, if as usual we tag along) approach the relationship with Beijing with anything like the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War, then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world. [my emphasis] ..."
"... It is not over in the sense that the West hasn't given up in its attempts to take over the world. ..."
"... The contest between the Empire and the upstarts is not over by a long shot. What the West HAS lost is the "inevitability" argument. But for the upstarts to actually prevail in their "multi-lateral" vision, they have to actually entice countries to join them despite threats and intimidation from the Empire. ..."
"... The Empire's power-elite KNOW that Russia, China, and allies of Russia-China don't want to be subject to their "rules-based order". The Empire is actively working to undermine, subvert, and divide the countries that oppose it. While also securing their own territories/population via intimidation and propaganda. ..."
"... On rules based disorder and the capitulation of Merkel and her BND lapdogs to the 'hate Russia' fulminations of the UKUSA morons. I see that the German Parliament has NOT TAKEN its red pills these days and is reluctant to swallow the BS. ..."
"... My late father as an army officer prosecuted Japanese war criminals for their atrocities now the Anglo-Zionists are the pre-eminent war criminals and their leaders loudly proclaim "our values" as a pathological and propagandistic form of projection. Is it possible they are unaware of their blatant hypocrisy ? ..."
"... There is no "international law" and no "international order." There is only relative power. And when those powers clash, as seems inevitable, the world is in for a major nuclear war, and probably preceded by several more regional wars. Meanwhile, the US internally is collapsing into economic disaster, social unrest, political and social oppression, infrastructure failure, and medical disasters. We'll probably be in martial law sometime between November 3 and January 21 if not beyond that period, just for starters. ..."
"... America's "Rules-Based International Order" is a Goebbelsian euphemism for a Lies-Based Imperial Order, led by the USA and its war criminal allies (aka the self-styled Free World). ..."
"... The true nature of this America-led order is exposed by the USA's war of aggression against Iraq (which violated international law and had no United Nations sanction) and its decades-long War on Terrorism, which have murdered hundreds of thousands of people and maimed, immiserated, or refugeed millions of more people. ..."
"... The Empire is very much alive and dangerous. Ask Iran, ask Syria, as the Palestinians, ask the Russians, ask the Chinese. Ask numerous African nations. Even Pangloss was not so stupidly naive. ..."
"... quite right. 'Rules based order' was always a euphemism for exceptionalism of one kind or another. ie US and its "allies" is basically asking the rest of the world to finance their (the US et al) version of a welfare state. ..."
"... China and rest of the worlds foreign central banks stopped growing their foreign exchange reserves (on net) in 2014 leaving the US in a sort of limbo. ..."
"... "Major powers maintaining cooperation, at least not engaging in Cold War-style antagonism, is the important foundation of world peace. China is committed to maintaining cooperation among major powers, as well as being flexible in the balance of interests acceptable to all parties. The problem is the Trump administration is hysterically shaping decoupling and confrontation between Beijing and Washington, and has been mobilizing more forces to its side at home and abroad. Those US policymakers are deliberately splitting the world like during the Cold War. ..."
"... The first 'Cold War' was entirely contrived. The US knew the Soviet Union was weak and had no agenda beyond maintaining security and its own reconstruction after WW2. There was no threat of a Western European invasion, or of the USSR spreading revolution globally. All that Cold War ideology is a lie. And the same lying is taking place about China today. No difference. ..."
"... It's good to see discussion here of the nefarious role of the American far-right neocon warmongers in the State Department, intelligence services and military leadership just before the turn of the new century. What I have never seen clearly explained, however, is the connection between these very dangerous forces and the equally cynical and reactionary Israeli politicians and the Mossad, as well as Saudi Arabian officials. ..."
Sep 25, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

The 'western' countries, i.e. the United States and its 'allies', love to speak of a 'rules based international order' which they say everyone should follow. That 'rules based order' is a way more vague concept than the actual rule of law:

The G7 is united by its shared values and commitment to a rules based international order. That order is being challenged by authoritarianism, serious violations of human rights, exclusion and discrimination, humanitarian and security crises, and the defiance of international law and standards.

As members of the G7, we are convinced that our societies and the world have reaped remarkable benefits from a global order based on rules and underscore that this system must have at its heart the notions of inclusion, democracy and respect for human rights, fundamental freedoms, diversity, and the rule of law.

That the 'rules based international order' is supposed to include vague concepts of 'democracy', 'human rights', 'fundamental freedoms', 'diversity' and more makes it easy to claim that this or that violation of the 'rules based international order' has occurred. Such violations can then be used to impose punishment in the form of sanctions or war.

That the above definition was given by a minority of a few rich nations makes it already clear that it can not be a global concept for a multilateral world. That would require a set of rules that everyone has agreed to. We already had and have such a system. It is called international law. But at the end of the cold war the 'west' began to ignore the actual international law and to replace it with its own rules which others were then supposed to follow. That hubris has come back to bite the 'west'.

Anatol Lieven's recent piece, How the west lost , describes this moral defeat of the 'west' after its dubious 'victory' in the cold war:

Accompanying this overwhelmingly dominant political and economic ideology was an American geopolitical vision equally grandiose in ambition and equally blind to the lessons of history. This was summed up in the memorandum on "Defence Planning Guidance 1994-1999," drawn up in April 1992 for the Bush Senior administration by Under-Secretary of Defence Paul Wolfowitz and Lewis "Scooter" Libby, and subsequently leaked to the media. Its central message was:
...
While that 1992 Washington paper spoke of the "legitimate interests" of other states, it clearly implied that it would be Washington that would define what interests were legitimate, and how they could be pursued. And once again, though never formally adopted, this "doctrine" became in effect the standard operating procedure of subsequent administrations. In the early 2000s, when its influence reached its most dangerous height, military and security elites would couch it in the terms of "full spectrum dominance." As the younger President Bush declared in his State of the Union address in January 2002, which put the US on the road to the invasion of Iraq: "By the grace of God, America won the Cold War A world once divided into two armed camps now recognizes one sole and pre-eminent power, the United States of America."

But that power has since failed in the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan, during the 2008 financial crisis and now again in the pandemic. It also created new competition to its role due to its own behavior:

On the one hand, American moves to extend Nato to the Baltics and then (abortively) on to Ukraine and Georgia, and to abolish Russian influence and destroy Russian allies in the Middle East, inevitably produced a fierce and largely successful Russian nationalist reaction. ...

On the other hand, the benign and neglectful way in which Washington regarded the rise of China in the generation after the Cold War (for example, the blithe decision to allow China to join the World Trade Organisation) was also rooted in ideological arrogance.

Western triumphalism meant that most of the US elites were convinced that as a result of economic growth, the Chinese Communist state would either democratise or be overthrown; and that China would eventually have to adopt the western version of economics or fail economically. This was coupled with the belief that good relations with China could be predicated on China accepting a so-called "rules-based" international order in which the US set the rules while also being free to break them whenever it wished; something that nobody with the slightest knowledge of Chinese history should have believed.

The retired Indian ambassador M.K. Bhadrakumar touches on the same points in an excellent series about the new Chinese-Russian alliance:

Bhadrakumar describes how the 'west', through its own behavior, created a mighty block that now opposes its dictates. He concludes:

Quintessentially, Russia and China contest a set of neoliberal practices that have evolved in the post-World War 2 international order validating selective use of human rights as a universal value to legitimise western intervention in the domestic affairs of sovereign states. On the other hand, they also accept and continuously affirm their commitment to a number of fundamental precepts of the international order -- in particular, the primacy of state sovereignty and territorial integrity, the importance of international law, and the centrality of the United Nations and the key role of the Security Council.

While the U.S. wants a vague 'rules based international order' China and Russia emphasize an international order that is based on the rule of law. Two recent comments by leaders from China and Russia underline this.

In a speech in honor of the UN's 75th anniversary China's President Xi Jinping emphasized law based multilateralism :

China firmly supports the United Nations' central role in global affairs and opposes any country acting like boss of the world, President Xi Jinping said on Monday.
...
"No country has the right to dominate global affairs, control the destiny of others or keep advantages in development all to itself," Xi said.

Noting that the UN must stand firm for justice, Xi said that mutual respect and equality among all countries, big or small, is the foremost principle of the UN Charter.

No country should be allowed to do whatever it likes and be the hegemon or bully, Xi said. "Unilateralism is a dead end," he said.
...
International laws should not be distorted or used as a pretext to undermine other countries' legitimate rights and interests or world peace and stability, he added.

The Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov went even further by outright rejecting the 'western rules' that the 'rules based international order' implies:

Ideas that Russia and China will play by sets of Western rules under any circumstances are deeply flawed , Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with New York-based international Russian-language RTVI channel.

"I was reading our political scientists who are well known in the West. The following idea is becoming louder and more pronounced: it is time to stop applying Western metrics to our actions and stop trying to be liked by the West at any cost . These are very reputable people and a rather serious statement. It is clear to me that the West is wittingly or unwittingly pushing us towards this analysis. It is likely to be done unwittingly," Lavrov noted. "However, it is a big mistake to think that Russia will play by Western rules in any case, just like thinking this in terms of China."

As an alliance China and Russia have all the raw materials, energy, engineering and industrial capabilities, agriculture and populations needed to be completely independent from the 'west'. They have no need nor any desire to follow dubious rules dictated by other powers. There is no way to make them do so. As M.K. Bhadrakumar concludes :

The US cannot overwhelm that alliance unless it defeats both China and Russia together, simultaneously. The alliance, meanwhile, also happens to be on the right side of history. Time works in its favour, as the decline of the US in relative comprehensive national power and global influence keeps advancing and the world gets used to the "post-American century."

---
P.S.
On a lighter note: RT , Russia's state sponsored international TV station, has recently hired Donald Trump (vid). He will soon host his own reality show on RT . The working title is reportedly: "Putin's Apprentice". The apprenticeship might give him a chance to learn how a nation that has failed can be resurrected to its former glory.

Posted by b on September 22, 2020 at 17:59 UTC | Permalink


Kali , Sep 22 2020 18:18 utc | 1

The Liberal International Order or Pax Americana are synonyms for The Rules Based Order. The plan that was followed for years was the outline given by Zbigniew Brzezinski and the Trilateral Commission in The Grand Chessboard to "contain" the ambition of Russia, China, and Iran over their interest to expand into Central Asia and the Middle East. Brzezinski changed in 2016, so did Kissinger, Brzezinski wrote that it was time to make peace and to integrate with Russia, China and Iran. But the elites had changed by then, newer people had taken over and no longer followed Brzezinski.
circumspect , Sep 22 2020 18:27 utc | 2
The rules are follow the dictates of our western neo-colonial institutions like the World Bank, the IMF et all. We will own you and you will do what we say and those are the rules. Any challenge to our authority will lead to war, economic ruin or both.

Its a pretty simple concept backed by the attack dog of the US military.

ptb , Sep 22 2020 18:37 utc | 3
'Rules based order' was always a euphemism for exceptionalism of one kind or another. The term was invented to avoid having to say 'rule of law', which invited criticism because even the most minimal amount of law (such as Geneva conventions, ICC etc) was rejected in practice and in policy by the leading members of the actually existing world order.
Patrick Armstrong , Sep 22 2020 18:52 utc | 4
Can't resist tooting my own horn.
https://patrickarmstrong.ca/2017/04/29/the-west-actually-lost-the-cold-war-it-turned-victory-into-defeat/
vk , Sep 22 2020 19:05 utc | 5
Rumor says the "Wolfowitz Doctrine" also envisioned the balkanization of Russia (the document is still classified, but it leaked to a NYT journalist at the time, who published a report on it).

.. .. ..

Passer by , Sep 22 2020 19:43 utc | 9
It is not over in the sense that the West hasn't given up in its attempts to take over the world. But as the "exceptionalist" western countries decline, they will go even crazier and crazier and there will be full blown hysteria.

In this sense, the rule based order will be over as there will be only disorder and animalistic, crazed western rage and bullying. The West is like a trapped animal. It will start pouncing, raging and snarling like a wild animal. This is the real nature of the West. A hungry wild animal that needs to feed.

All the liberalism is just self-congratulation about how exceptionalist it is. It is born out of narcisism and self-obsession during the "good times" of the West.

But behind the liberal mask, there are hateful eyes and gnashing teeth, and hunger and greed for other people's resources.

The real face of it is hateful and snarling. And it will be fully exposed during the next 10 years, as the West goes crazy and it becomes a hungry wild animal that desperately needs to feed.

Expressed in words, the West's face says "I'm the best and you are nothing! Give me your stuff! And this is how it will forever be!"

Countries need to stay out from the wild animal and carry a big stick just in case, until it succumbs from its internal hatreds and contradictions.

gepay , Sep 22 2020 19:44 utc | 11

As Putin has said, the US is no longer agreement capable. As b. outlines. the US elites no longer follow the rule of law. This is even true within the US. The US inherited the role formerly played by the British Empire after WW2.

The national security apparatus of both the US and the Soviet Union kept the Cold War going. Notice how soon after JFK was assassinated Khrushchev was deposed. Gorbachev rightly stopped the Soviets superpower regime. As Dmitri Orlov points out - Empire hollowed out the Soviet Union and he sees it doing the same to the US.

Instead of bringing Russia into the Western liberal democracies (with the threat of major nuclear war now drastically reduced) the now Anglo-Zionist Empire just looted it. The life expectancy of Russians fell 7 years in a decade until rescued by Putin.

It can now be seen that the Nixon-Kissinger opening up to China was not to gain access to its large market potential but to gain access to hundreds of millions of cheap, disciplined, and educated workers. The elites starting in the 70s became greedier. Jet travel,electronic communication, and computers allowed the outsourcing of manufacture.

The spread of air conditioning allowed even the too hot south to be a location. First in the US as the factories began their march through the non union southern states onto Mexico. Management from the north could now live in air conditioned houses, drive air conditioned cars and work in air conditioned offices.

The 70s oil inflation led to stagnation as the unionized labor were powerful enough to get cost of living raises. With the globalization of labor union power in the US has been destroyed. As Eric X Li points out China's one party rule actually changes policies easier than the Western democracies.

So China's government hasn't joined in with the West in just creating wealth for the top 1% and debt for the real economy.

As b. pointed out, the Anglo Zionist policies created the mutual benefit partnership of Russia and China. The Chinese belt and road initiative appears to be intent on creating a large trading zone that could benefit those involved. The US is just using sanctions and the military to turn sovereign functioning countries that don't go along with it into failed states and their infrastructure turned to rubble

Roy G , Sep 22 2020 20:11 utc | 13
Now, the US is forced into puppeteering the UN in order to maintain the illusion of the 'rules based order,' even as it slides further and further away from any meaningful international cooperation:

Fortunately for the world, the United States took responsible action to stop this from happening. In accordance with our rights under UNSCR 2231, we initiated the snapback process to restore virtually all previously terminated UN sanctions, including the arms embargo. The world will be safer as a result.

The United States expects all UN Member States to fully comply with their obligations to implement these measures. In addition to the arms embargo, this includes restrictions such as the ban on Iran engaging in enrichment and reprocessing-related activities, the prohibition on ballistic missile testing and development by Iran, and sanctions on the transfer of nuclear- and missile-related technologies to Iran, among others. If UN Member States fail to fulfill their obligations to implement these sanctions, the United States is prepared to use our domestic authorities to impose consequences for those failures and ensure that Iran does not reap the benefits of UN-prohibited activity.

https://www.state.gov/the-return-of-un-sanctions-on-the-islamic-republic-of-iran/

Passer by , Sep 22 2020 20:15 utc | 16
Any type of enmity btw the two countries under Trump is pure theater.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Sep 22 2020 20:07 utc | 10

Actually the Trump Administration has done far more against Russia than all US administrations from the last 30 years. Do not listen what they say, look at what they do. Right now the US in a full blown Cold War with Russia with ever increasing attacks.

foolisholdman , Sep 22 2020 20:22 utc | 17
Pompeo talks more or less continually about "China's bullying behaviour". To me it is wonderful that he can say this with a straight face. (Perhaps it is a result of his lessons in the CIA on "how to lie better".)All the countries that have engaged with China have benefitted from it, whether as salesmen or as recipients of aid or loans at advantageous rates. The countries that have engaged with America have mostly (All?) lost. (The fifty+ countries invaded and wrecked since WW2 or the NATO "allies" or the countries attacked with sanctions.) Either their economies were destroyed or billions upon billions of dollars were paid to the US MIC. The NATO member countries have got what from their membership? Formerly, they had "Protection" from an imaginary Soviet threat, more recently "Protection" from an equally imaginary Russian threat! Some bargain, that!
Christian J. Chuba , Sep 22 2020 20:38 utc | 18
Rules based international order .... the U.S. functions as the the Supreme Court for the U.N. , 'we have invoked snapback sanctions and extended the arms embargo on Iran indefinitely and are enforcing it'. UN, 'but your vote failed'.

U.S, 'we have the right to seize cargo between any two countries transported in international waters based on U.S. federal appeals court decision even though the transaction in no way involves the U.S. We call this Freedom of Navigation and why we need to have aircraft carriers in the South China Sea and Arabian Gulf'

We are completely and totally insane.

psychohistorian , Sep 22 2020 20:41 utc | 19
Rules based International Order is the dog whistle for global private finance controlled economies. It is sad that we are in a civilization war with China/Russia about who runs international finance going forward and yet there is no discussion of the subject but instead all sorts of proxy conflicts.

Thanks for the posting b as it gets to the core myths around the global private finance jackboot on the neck of countries in the West.

profk , Sep 22 2020 20:59 utc | 22
The US is not just facing relative decline -- the fact that others are catching up in key ways. The US is also facing absolute decline -- the fact that it is suffering a degradation of capacities and is losing competitive battles in key areas. Examples of absolute decline include the Russian and Chinese military-technological revolutions based on anti-ship and hypersonic missiles and air defense systems; Chinese 5G; China's demonstrative success in suppressing COVID and its overall manufacturing power; the declining quality of life for most Americans; and the collapse of American institutional competence.

Related to this, we can't separate these dynamics from the political economy of the states in question. China, in particular, is showing that an interventionist state, with high levels of public ownership, is essential to qualitative power, human security, and economic and social development.

Capitalism might enrich a few, but it is the primary cause of America's relative and absolute decline.

jayc , Sep 22 2020 21:01 utc | 23
US and allied military analysts have been talking over the last year or so of the need to enter a single focus and total "wartime" posture throughout our societies, with all financial and industrial output directed to the "war". This has influenced the information/ propaganda efforts, but also the uptick in military manoeuvres around Taiwan and renewed NATO pressure directed at Russia (including the recent provocative B52 flights). Don't think Russia/China can be tricked into over-reacting, but some kind of loss-of-life military confrontation may be what the rules-based side is looking for as the population at large will probably not accept a "wartime sacrifice" regimen without such.
Kiza , Sep 22 2020 21:26 utc | 26
Very well written article.

Whilst Russia and China are creating a truly new, unique and creative alliance and a market of everything, in Australia the "authorities" are sicking their police dogs on poor grannies sitting on park benches. This image of five brainless armed state goons in a show of force over two quiet little grannies really puts things into perspective. It must be that New World Order that Soros and puppets always talked about.

Psssst, learning Russian is easier than Chinese and we already know a few Russian words, such as novichok.

Leser , Sep 22 2020 21:42 utc | 29
Great analysis b and connecting the dots.

The post scriptum stopped the clock for me. Has our host slipped into our drink there a profound prophecy, disguised as jesting?

Many agree something big will happen (break?) soon, possibly with the elections. The other thing is the Americans' ability to change course, drop all baggage, and run off in a new, even the opposite direction with unfettered enthusiasm (and ferocity). No people has a greater capacity for almost instant renewal, once it chooses to.

I also notice that the spoof takes good aim at The Donald's peculiarities, though in a fair and human way. The proverbial Russian warmth, or a humorous invitation?

Meanwhile, I enjoy my newfound optimism in these dark times. Thanks b!

uncle tungsten , Sep 22 2020 21:59 utc | 32
Thanks b and on Anatol Lieven in the Prospect story (fairy story?)...
Russia after the Cold War was a shambles and today it remains a weak economy with a limited role on the world stage, concerned mainly with retaining some of its traditional areas of influence. China is a vastly more formidable competitor. If the US (and the UK, if as usual we tag along) approach the relationship with Beijing with anything like the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War, then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world. [my emphasis]

Lieven simply does not see it. Has it ever occurred to Lieven that colonialism just might be rejected by both Russia and China and that there might be no competition? Does Lieven watch too much football?

What is it that endangers the world in Lieven's petite cortex? This verbose Lieven tosh is littered with fancy sentences trawled from here and there but always presented to us from a narrow dimensional mind with limited analysis and seemingly zero interrogation.

again:- "then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world"...

So Lieven thinks the current behaviour of the US hegemon and its collaborator the UK is innocuous? These were the two nations that blithely squandered the "peace dividend" from the end of cold war as he describes and have led us to this time of perpetual war. A perpetual war that he does not mention, does not allude to, does not treat as an important driver behind the current global mistrust and disengagement from the USUK drive for global dominance.

Lieven is putting lipstick on his pig and screaming about losing the competition to the imagined wolf outside his prison.

Beneath contempt.

Jackrabbit , Sep 22 2020 22:09 utc | 33
Passer by @Sep22 19:43 #8
It is not over in the sense that the West hasn't given up in its attempts to take over the world.
I agree. The contest between the Empire and the upstarts is not over by a long shot. What the West HAS lost is the "inevitability" argument. But for the upstarts to actually prevail in their "multi-lateral" vision, they have to actually entice countries to join them despite threats and intimidation from the Empire.

_________________________________

Passer by @Sep22 20:15 #14

Right now the US in a full blown Cold War with Russia with ever increasing attacks.
Yes. We still see the narratives like of Trump as Putin-lover despite the debunking of Russiagate and the clear evidence of Cold War tensions. The incessant propaganda reeks of desperation.

<> <> <> <> <> <>

Some seem to think that the Empire is cornered.

Aha! We've got you now, you scoundrels!

LOL.

The Empire's power-elite KNOW that Russia, China, and allies of Russia-China don't want to be subject to their "rules-based order". The Empire is actively working to undermine, subvert, and divide the countries that oppose it. While also securing their own territories/population via intimidation and propaganda.

!!

uncle tungsten , Sep 22 2020 22:53 utc | 36
On rules based disorder and the capitulation of Merkel and her BND lapdogs to the 'hate Russia' fulminations of the UKUSA morons. I see that the German Parliament has NOT TAKEN its red pills these days and is reluctant to swallow the BS. It would be satisfying to see the collective wisdom of the Parliament to exceed that of the BND. But then that is a low bar.
karlof1 , Sep 22 2020 22:55 utc | 37
An excellent look into the seemingly mundane but important business of negotiating arms control agreements is offered here: Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov's interview with the newspaper Kommersant, published on September 22, 2020 . Excerpt:

"For our part, we more than once described a balanced and mutually acceptable framework for future agreements in this sphere during our contacts with the American negotiators. Aware of the difficulties on the path forward in light of how widely different our approaches are, we proposed extending the New START as it was originally signed.

"We do not want any unilateral advantages, but we will not make any unilateral concessions either. A deal may be possible if the United States is ready to coordinate a new document on the basis of the balance of interests, parity and without expecting Russia to make unilateral concessions. But this will take time. We can have time to do this if the treaty is extended."

As predicted, the Outlaw US Empire makes an offer it knows will be refused so it can then blame Russia for being an unreliable negotiating partner--a trick we've all seen before.

Lavrov conducted a short interview with Sputnik mostly about Belarus and Ukraine and much of which is a rehash.

Passer by , Sep 22 2020 23:07 utc | 39
@Jackrabbit | Sep 22 2020 22:09 utc | 31

I agree. The contest between the Empire and the upstarts is not over by a long shot. What the West HAS lost is the "inevitability" argument. But for the upstarts to actually prevail in their "multi-lateral" vision, they have to actually entice countries to join them despite threats and intimidation from the Empire.

Yes, the big question remaining is to predict what will happen and when. This is what the real deal is. And I'm sure they are working on that in the Intel agencies. It can certainly be predicted that the US and the EU will be significantly weaker in 2030 that today. Will this be enough is the question.

We now have some new information about US long term health as published by CBO. Very interesting numbers.

They predict lower population growth and lower GDP growth for the US than previously estimated, as well as higher debt rates. US federal debt is to reach 195 % of GDP by 2050 under best case scenario.

http://www.crfb.org/papers/analysis-cbos-2020-long-term-budget-outlook

Analysts also seem to agree that the Covid 19 crisis further weakened the US vis a vis China, as the Chinese economy significantly outperformed almost everyone else this year, more than expected before the crisis.

I will also mention two important recent numbers. This year:

1. China, for the first time, became the biggest trading partner for the EU, beating the US.

2. China's retail market overtook the one of the US.

kiwiklown , Sep 22 2020 23:41 utc | 41
Posted by: vk | Sep 22 2020 19:05 utc | 4 -- "....Eurasia is where most of human civilization lives, it's the "World Island" - the world island not in the military sense, but in the economic sense. Every path to human prosperity passes through Eurasia - that's why the USA can't "let it alone" in the first place, while the reverse is not true, that is, Eurasia can give to the luxury of letting the Americas alone."

Excellent observation, VK.

Even if the World Island (thanks for your formulation) trades with itself, within itself, there is sufficient mass to last a century, during which the arrogantly exceptional West might just wake up from their Century of Humiliation.

Meanwhile, inertia alone will ensure that the West forgets that their vaunted "civilisation" was fed, watered, enriched by the Silk Route that came from the East -- from the Middle Kingdom (China) and from the Middle East (which is "middle", as you pointed out above, because all wealth passes through that region).

Paul , Sep 23 2020 0:02 utc | 43
Yes there are rules which are observed more by their breach than their observance: The Geneva Conventions. Just ask Julian Assange.

I find it incredible that the Anglo-Zionist captive nations can sign, ratify, incorporate into domestic law and then sign the additional protocol, making themselves high contracting parties, which requires them to report all and any breaches to Geneva, then ignore all the above commitments. One of these commitments includes educating their citizens on the basic provisions of the conventions. Again they haven't bothered, that could expose their hypocrisy to the public.

Even the bandit statelet signed but I am yet to see just one example of its application in the seventy plus years of its barbaric and bloodthirsty occupation of Palestine.

Interestingly, the conventions prohibit the occupied from signing away one iota of their territory to the occupier. So much for what Claude Pictet's Commentary to the Fourth Geneva Convention calls "alleged annexations." This book is available from the ICRC.

My late father as an army officer prosecuted Japanese war criminals for their atrocities now the Anglo-Zionists are the pre-eminent war criminals and their leaders loudly proclaim "our values" as a pathological and propagandistic form of projection. Is it possible they are unaware of their blatant hypocrisy ?

It seems the New World Order has some familiar and unsurprising antecedents:

https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/452693/New-world-order-pledged-to-Jews-80-years-ago

Hold on tight, hubris is always fatal:

https://asiatimes.com/2020/09/pompeo-threatens-to-light-the-fuse-in-persian-gulf/

Jen , Sep 23 2020 0:09 utc | 44
Uncle Tungsten @ 30:

Anatol Lieven comes from an educated and cultured family in Britain's upper middle class layer. His older siblings - he is the youngest of five children - include a High Court judge (Dame Natalie Lieven), a Cambridge University professor / historian (Dominic Lieven) and a psychologist / linguistics researcher (Elena Lieven). They haven't done badly for a family from the old Baltic German aristocratic elite that used to serve the Russian empire as administrators for the Livonia governorate.

The British Lievens might see themselves as gatekeepers and interpreters of what the ruling classes desire (or appear to desire) and communicate that down to us. Hence their positions in intellectual and academic occupations - no engineers, technicians or academics in the physical or biological sciences among their number.

Anatol Lieven is right though about "competition", in the sense I believe he is using it: it is "competition" for supposed global leadership and influence as only the British and Americans understand it. Life as British and American elites understand it is the annual football competition writ large; there can only be one winner and the worst position to be in is second place and every other place below it. Never mind that what Russia and China have in mind is a vision of the world with multiple and overlapping leadership roles dispersed among nations according to various criteria: this ideal is simply too much for the Anglosphere elites to understand, let alone digest and accept.

Still, I wonder why Anatol Lieven is teaching in a university in Qatar of all places. Family influence and reputation must only go so far.

Richard Steven Hack , Sep 23 2020 0:54 utc | 47
Posted by: lizard | Sep 22 2020 21:59 utc | 29

if you aren't at least a little prepared for a disruption in critical supplies, and choose instead to waste time commenting on online forums, it won't matter how up to date you are on "rules based international order" vs. "international law". at that point the reality will be something like this: if you aren't holding it, you don't have it, and if you can't defend it, you won't be keeping it for long.

Got that absolutely right.

There is no "international law" and no "international order." There is only relative power. And when those powers clash, as seems inevitable, the world is in for a major nuclear war, and probably preceded by several more regional wars. Meanwhile, the US internally is collapsing into economic disaster, social unrest, political and social oppression, infrastructure failure, and medical disasters. We'll probably be in martial law sometime between November 3 and January 21 if not beyond that period, just for starters.

This month is National Preparedness Month. I recommend watching the following videos from well-known "preppers" who have been warning about this stuff for years.

78 Days Will Determine the Fate of America
5 Things You Need To Do Before the U.S. Election

A playlist of 23 videos for National Preparedness Month:
30 Days of Preparedness Collaboration - 2020

And this one from The Urban Prepper, an IT guy who is exceptionally well organized and logical in his videos. I recommend subscribing to his channel. He avoids most of the excessive "doom and gloom" hype that afflicts a lot of prepper channels and is oriented more about urban survival than "backwoods bushcraft" since most people live in cities.
Prepping 101: Prepping Architecture Diagram for Gear Organization

And if you don't watch anything else, watch this one from Canadian Prepper - he's absolutely right in this one and it specifically applies to the barflies here:
What is Really Going On? Its WORSE Than You Think

Jun , Sep 23 2020 1:06 utc | 48
Meanwhile, inertia alone will ensure that the West forgets that their vaunted "civilisation" was fed, watered, enriched by the Silk Route that came from the East -- from the Middle Kingdom (China) and from the Middle East (which is "middle", as you pointed out above, because all wealth passes through that region).
Posted by: kiwiklown | Sep 22 2020 23:41 utc | 39

============================================================================================

Thereby we have the answer to America's longest war:

https://twitter.com/danieldumbrill/status/1290456155286900737?lang=en

Richard Steven Hack , Sep 23 2020 1:19 utc | 50
Oh, and this one from Canadian Prepper in which he muses about whether and why we actually *want* the SHTF situation to occur. This one would resonate with a lot of the commentary here about the social malaise and the psychological reasons for it. Maybe nothing really new for some, but definitely relevant.

Society is Collapsing: Prepare for the Next Phase

uncle tungsten , Sep 23 2020 1:47 utc | 51
Jen #42
Still, I wonder why Anatol Lieven is teaching in a university in Qatar of all places. Family influence and reputation must only go so far.

Thank you that backgrounder explains a lot. Perhaps like Englanders before him he finds Qatar, safe and rewarding PLUS mounds of finest hashish and titillating company. From my understanding it is a grotesque abuser of human rights and everyone has a price.

ak74 , Sep 23 2020 2:15 utc | 52
America's "Rules-Based International Order" is a Goebbelsian euphemism for a Lies-Based Imperial Order, led by the USA and its war criminal allies (aka the self-styled Free World).

The true nature of this America-led order is exposed by the USA's war of aggression against Iraq (which violated international law and had no United Nations sanction) and its decades-long War on Terrorism, which have murdered hundreds of thousands of people and maimed, immiserated, or refugeed millions of more people. These crimes against humanity have been justified by Orwellian American lies about "Weapons of Mass Destruction," "fighting terrorism," or the curious events of Sept. 11th.

This America "Rules-Based" order is one drenched in the blood of millions of people--even as it sanctimoniously disguises itself behind endless propaganda about defending liberal democracy or the rule of law.

Truly, America and its allies can take their malignant Rules-Based Disorder back to Hell, where they all belong.

Two decades of US "war on terror" responsible for displacing at least 37 million people and killing up to 12 million
https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/09/09/cost-s09.html?view=print

Erelis , Sep 23 2020 3:01 utc | 53
Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 23 2020 0:50 utc | 44

"Thus your "side note" has no "relevance" whatsoever."

You sound like some podunk UN official from a podunk country trying to impress a waitress in a NYC bar. The Empire is very much alive and dangerous. Ask Iran, ask Syria, as the Palestinians, ask the Russians, ask the Chinese. Ask numerous African nations. Even Pangloss was not so stupidly naive.

uncle tungsten , Sep 23 2020 3:02 utc | 54
Jun #46

Thank you - YES that is the answer and always has been PLUS there will be no pipeline from Iran through Afghanistan to Pakistan and on to China. There will be NO overland pipeline or rail route to sound the death knell to the maritime mafia.

milomilo , Sep 23 2020 3:33 utc | 55
Please vote for trump 2020. no president destroy America from inside like what trump did. The goal is to accelerate American empire destruction and grip in this world. What better way to put such clown along his circus in white house. he will make a mess of everything and will definitely bring America down

i hope he win 2020 and America explode into civil war and chaos. With America destroyed internally , they wont have time to invade Venezuela or Iran

milomilo , Sep 23 2020 3:37 utc | 56
Remember , if Biden win 2020 , American foreign policy will revert into normalcy that means seeking alliance with EU and 5 eyes in a more meaningful way , aka giving them preferential treatment on trade..

all that to box in china and russia , reenable TPP , initiate the delayed venezuela overt invasion other than covert

this is dangerous for the whole world , not that it will save US in the long run but it will increase real shooting conflict with china and russia.. So focus on trump victory in 2020 , the more controversial the win the better , lets push america into chaos

defaultcitizen , Sep 23 2020 3:41 utc | 57
I appreciate the time and thought that goes into a post like this; all without a popup ad trying to sell me ANOTHER item I just bought via Amazon, in spite of the fact that I am among the least likely to want another right now. Voice of reason crying in the wilderness and all that.

The rule The Capitalist Ogres promote as the heart of Civilization is simply the age-old Golden Rule. Those with the gold, make the rules.

j. casey , Sep 23 2020 12:28 utc | 75
In the very short-term (3 months?) what is the outcome of US/Nato seizure of ships and cargo in international water?
chris m , Sep 23 2020 13:42 utc | 79
@ptb
quite right. 'Rules based order' was always a euphemism for exceptionalism of one kind or another. ie US and its "allies" is basically asking the rest of the world to finance their (the US et al) version of a welfare state.

as US et al can no longer fund their own unaffordable welfare promises made to their own electorates, they have to call on the rest of the world to do so (China has been effectively funding the US budget deficit since they entered the WTO.
and the EU (mainly Germany) was doing the same before China's entry into WTO)

China and rest of the worlds foreign central banks stopped growing their foreign exchange reserves (on net) in 2014
leaving the US in a sort of limbo.

chris m , Sep 23 2020 13:47 utc | 80
PS addendum: if you've ever wondered who has been financing the GWOT since 2001; it was the Chinese.
karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 15:21 utc | 82
chris m @80--

Well, you're sorta correct; it was all those nations including China that bought Outlaw US Empire debt. China certainly knows better now and for almost a decade now it's purchases--and those of the rest of the world -- of said debt have declined to the point where a huge crisis related to the debt pyramid threatens all those aside from the 1% living within the Outlaw US Empire. The Judo involved was very instructive.

karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 16:21 utc | 85
"Trump's UN address censured" headlines Global Times article that reviews yesterday's UNGA. Domestic BigLie Media didn't like what it heard from Trump:

"Commenting on the US' performance, many Western media tended to view US as being 'isolated,' and its unilateral efforts 'widely derided....'

"Some US media outlets cannot stand Trump's accusations. A WSJ report said many Democrats blamed Trump for "isolating the US and diluting American influence in the WHO or other bodies."

It went on to say Trump's threat of withdrawal is often used as leverage to "influence partner countries, or get allies to pay more for shared defense."

"Some US media linked Trump's address to his widely blamed effort to re-impose sanctions on Iran, saying his address came as 'UN members push back against Washington,' AP reported.

"Wednesday's Washington Post article reported that the Trump administration walked on a 'lonely path' at the UN where the US attacked WHO, and embarked on the 'widely derided' effort to snap back Iran sanctions.

"A week before the UN General Assembly, US media NPR predicted that the US 'appeared to be isolated' at this year's General Assembly, saying that Trump's 'America First' agenda left him out of sync with America's traditional allies as it has a long record of pulling out of international agreements, including one meant to tackle the world's climate crisis."

So, Trump's attack on China's environmental record was beyond hypocritical and ought to be termed psychopathic prevarication. The best comment from the article well describes the Trumptroll @53:

"'Trump's smears and attacks against China were apparently aimed at campaigning for his reelection. Only his die-hard fans - those who do not care about truth but support him - will buy his words ,' Ding Yifan, a researcher at the Institute of World Development of the Development Research Center of the State Council, told the Global Times." [My Emphasis]

And isn't that really the basic issue--the truth? 75 years of lies by the Outlaw US Empire to cover it's continuous illegalities and subversion of its own fundamental law while killing and displacing tens of millions of people. Guardian of the Free World my ass! More like Guardian of the Gates of Hell.

vk , Sep 23 2020 16:40 utc | 86
More on the situation of the "rules based international order":

The Eurozone economy stopped recovering and stagnated in September (PMI)

And here's a more general picture on the state of global capitalism today:

The 90% world economy (UNCTAD report)

karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 16:45 utc | 87
Yes, I'm biased, but anyone seeking truth and invoking the Rule of Law would find themselves at odds with the Outlaw US Empire. Today's Global Times Editorial makes the following key observations:

"Major powers maintaining cooperation, at least not engaging in Cold War-style antagonism, is the important foundation of world peace. China is committed to maintaining cooperation among major powers, as well as being flexible in the balance of interests acceptable to all parties. The problem is the Trump administration is hysterically shaping decoupling and confrontation between Beijing and Washington, and has been mobilizing more forces to its side at home and abroad. Those US policymakers are deliberately splitting the world like during the Cold War.

"The impulse to promote a cold war is the ultimate version of unilateralism, and shows dangerous and mistaken arrogance that the US is almighty. Everyone knows that the US is declining in its competitiveness under the rules-based international system the US itself initiated and created. It wants to build a new system more beneficial to itself, and allow the US to maintain its advantage without making any effort. This is simply impossible."

My research is pointing me to conclude the First Cold War was contrived so the Outlaw US Empire could impose privately owned finance and corporations and the political-economies connected to them upon the world lest the collective forces that were the ones to actually defeat Fascism gain control of their national governments and shape their political-economies into the public/collectively owned realm where the benefits would flow to all people instead of just the already powerful. That's also the intent of imposing a Second Cold War. Some seem to think there's no ideological divide at play, but as I've ceaselessly explained there most certainly is, thus the intense demonization of both Russia and China--the Strategic Competition also is occurring in the realm of Ideas. And the only tools available for the Outlaw US Empire to use are lies, since the truths involved would encourage any neutral nation to join the Win-Win vision of China and Russia, not the Zero-sum bankruptcy pushed by the Parasites controlling the Empire.

psychohistorian , Sep 23 2020 17:07 utc | 88
@ karlof1 | Sep 23 2020 15:56 utc | 84 and forward with the links and quotes...thanks

I do like the confirmation Pepe quote, thanks

It is sad to understand that much of the US population does not have the mental clarity to see that Trump is no different than Biden when it comes to fealty to the God of Mammon. Way too many Americans think that replacing Trump with Biden will make things all better.

The end of the rules based international order/global private finance cannot end soon enough, IMO

Timothy Hagios , Sep 23 2020 17:19 utc | 90
farm ecologist @ 89

Patrick Armstrong publishes the sitreps (and other content) at https://patrickarmstrong.ca/

karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 18:07 utc | 92
psychohistorian @88--

Thanks for your reply! As I discussed with the Missus last night, IMO only the people regaining control over the federal government can rescue themselves from the multiple dilemmas they face--the most pressing being the Debt Bomb and control of the monetary and fiscal systems by private entities as exemplified by the Federal Reserve and Wall Street, both of which employ the Financial Parasites preying on the nation's body-politic. Undoing all the past wrongs requires both Congress and the Executive be captured by The People who can then write the laws to end the wrongs while arresting and prosecuting those responsible for the last 20+ years of massive fraud. The biggest components would be ending the Federal Reserve, Nationalizing all the fraudster banks, writing down the vast majority of debt, and disbanding NATO thus ending the overseas empire. Those are the most fundamental steps required for the USA to avoid the coming calamity brought about by the Neoliberals. I also have finally developed my thesis on where, why and how that philosophy was developed and put into motion.

profk , Sep 23 2020 18:16 utc | 94
karlof,

The first 'Cold War' was entirely contrived. The US knew the Soviet Union was weak and had no agenda beyond maintaining security and its own reconstruction after WW2. There was no threat of a Western European invasion, or of the USSR spreading revolution globally. All that Cold War ideology is a lie. And the same lying is taking place about China today. No difference.

The key issues for the US were:

1. it needed western european capitalist states to buy US manufactured exports. Those states had to remain capitalist and subordinate to the US, i.e. to avoid what Acheson called 'neutralism' in world politics.

2. the US wanted gradual decolonization of the British and French empires so that US firms could access markets and resources in those same territories. but the US feared revolutionary nationalism in the colonies and the potential loss of market access by the former colonial powers, which would need resources from the post-colonial world to rebuild after WW2.

The key event which cemented the 'Cold War' in Europe was the division of Germany, which Carolyn Eisenberg shows was entirely an American decision, in her important book, Drawing the Line.

The driving force of all this, though, was the economic imperatives of US capitalism. The US needed to restore and save capitalism in Western Europe and Japan, and the Cold War was the ideological framework for doing so. The Cold War ideology also allowed the US to frame its meddling in Korea, Guatemala, Iran, etc.

The late historian Gabriel Kolko wrote the best analyses of these issues. His work is much better than the New Left 'revisionist' US historians.

karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 20:01 utc | 96
profk @94--

I agree with your recap and second your appraisal of Gabriel Kolko. Eisenberg's work somehow escaped my view but will no longer thanks to your suggestion.

But I see more to it all as the First Cold War had to occur to promote the financialization of the USA's industrial Capitalism which began within the USA in 1913 and was abruptly interrupted by the various market crashes, the failure of the international payments system and subsequent massive deflation and Great Depression. A similar plan to outsource manufactures to its colonies and commonwealth and financialize its economy was began in the UK sometime after the end of the US Civil War. At the time in England, the school of Classical Political-Economists and their political allies (CPE) were attempting to rid the UK and the rest of Europe of the last vestiges of Feudalism that resided in the Rentier and Banking Classes, the former being mostly populated by Royalty and its retainers. Land Rent was the primary source of their income while it was the stated intent of the CPE to change the tax burden from individuals and businesses to that of Land Rent and other forms of Unearned Income. That movement came swiftly on the heels of the abolition of the Slave Trade which was a vast source of Royal income. Recognizing this threat to the basis of their wellbeing, the Royals needed to turn the tables but in such a manner where their manipulation was secret because of the vast popularity of the CPE's agenda. Thus began the movement to discredit the CPE and remove their ideas from discourse and later completely from the history of political-economy. And there was another problem--German Banks and their philosophy inspired by Bismarck to be totally supportive of German industry, which provided the impetus for its own colonial pursuits primarily in Africa.

Within that paragraph is my thesis for the rise of Neoliberalism, much of which Dr. Hudson documents but hasn't yet gotten to/revealed the root cause of the counter revolution against the CPE. IMO, that reactionary movement underlies far more, particularly the growing animosity between the UK and Germany from 1875 to 1914. As Eisenberg's research proves, there's much more past to be revealed that helps to resolve how we arrived at the times we now face.

karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 20:16 utc | 97
CitizenX @95--

Indeed, as Hudson and Max Keiser ask: Why pay taxes at all since the Fed can create all the credit required. I've written about the pros and cons of Secession here before which are quite similar to those existing in 1861. In Washington for example, how to deal with all the Federal property located there. Just as Ft. Sumter didn't belong to South Carolina, the many military bases there don't belong to Washington. Trying to seize it as the South Carolinians attempted in 1861 merely creates the casus belli sought by Trump. Now if you could get the vast majority of the military stationed in Washington to support your cause, your odds of resisting would greatly improve.

IMO, trying to regain public control over the Federal government would be much easier.

uncle tungsten , Sep 23 2020 21:21 utc | 98
karlof1 #85

Thank you brother karlof1, YES, the minotaur indeed but where is Theseus and Ariadne when we need them? Please don't tell me that Biden and Harris are the 'chosen ones' - that would mock the legend and prove that the gods are truly crazy :))

karlof1 , Sep 23 2020 22:48 utc | 101
ooops *elicit* uncle tungsten @98--

Well, they've clearly been chosen; they're just not THE CHOSEN and IMO would never qualify.

By contrast, here's Maduro's UNGA statement , a man clearly superior in all respects to either Biden or Trump or any of their vassals.

karlof1 , Sep 24 2020 0:31 utc | 103
It seems to me that a review is required, that we need to turn back the clock to an earlier analysis whose veracity has only been boosted by subsequent events. So here from 2011: "On November 3, 2011, Alan Minsky interviewed me on KPFK's program, 'Building a Powerful Movement in the United States' in preparation for an Occupy L.A. teach-in." Here's a brief excerpt to remind people what this is all about:

"Once people realize that they're being screwed, that's a pre-revolutionary situation. It's a situation where they can get a lot of sympathy and support, precisely by not doing what The New York Times and the other papers say they should do: come up with some neat solutions. They don't have to propose a solution because right now there isn't one – without changing the system with many, many changes. So many that it's like a new Constitution. Politics as well as the economy need to be restructured. What's developing now is how to think about the economic and political problems that are bothering people. It is not radical to realize that the economy isn't working. That is the first stage to realizing that a real alternative is needed. We've been under a radical right-wing attack – and need to respond in kind. The next half-year probably will be spent trying to spell out what the best structure would be."

Billosky , Sep 24 2020 6:19 utc | 104
It's good to see discussion here of the nefarious role of the American far-right neocon warmongers in the State Department, intelligence services and military leadership just before the turn of the new century. What I have never seen clearly explained, however, is the connection between these very dangerous forces and the equally cynical and reactionary Israeli politicians and the Mossad, as well as Saudi Arabian officials.

Like many others, I have been slowly won over to the position that the attacks of 9-11, and especially the totally unprecedented collapses of the three WTC towers, could only have been caused by the precisely timed explosion of previously installed demolition materials containing nanothermite. But if one accepts that position the immediately subsequent question is "Who planned and carried out the attacks?" Many people have claimed it was the Mossad, others that it was the Mossad in concert with the US neocons etc., -- many of whom were Israeli/US dual citizens -- but even now, so many years after the horrific events, I can find no coherent account of how such conspirators, or any others for that matter, might actually have carried out WTC building demotions. Do any of you know of sources on the matter that have made good progress on connecting the dots and explaining what precisely happened -- the easier part -- and how exactly it was carried out, by whom, and how they have managed to get away with it for all this time?

Piotr Berman , Sep 24 2020 14:04 utc | 106
Lieven: If the US (and the UK, if as usual we tag along) approach the relationship with Beijing with anything like the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War, then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world.[my emphasis]

Uncle Tungsten: Lieven simply does not see it. Has it ever occurred to Lieven that colonialism just might be rejected by both Russia and China and that there might be no competition? Does Lieven watch too much football?

What is it that endangers the world in Lieven's petite cortex?
-------
It is clear to me that Tungsten does not understand Lieven because Lieven does not cross all t's and dot all i's. There can be two reasons for Lieven style: (1) a British style, leaving some conclusions to the reader, it is not elegant to belabor the obvious (2) Lieven works in a pro-Western feudal state and that particular piece appeared in a neo-liberal outfit where it is already a clear outlier toward (what I see as) common sense. Neo-liberals view themselves as liberals, "tolerating a wide spectrum of opinion", but with clear limits about the frequency and content for the outliers of their tolerance.

Back to "endangering the world", how "loosing competition to China" can result in huge mayhem? I guess that Tungsten is a little dense here. The sunset of Anglo-Saxon domination can seem like the end of the world for the "members" of that domination. But a longer historical perspective can offer a much darker vision of the future. First, there is a clash of two blocks, one with superior industrial production, domination of markets of assorted goods -- both as importer and exporter, etc, the other with still superior military technology and combative spirit.

Recall (or check) the situation in east Asia ca. 1240 AD. One of the major power was Song China, after a calamitous defeat roughly 300 years later, diminished Song China succeeded in developing all kinds of practical and beautiful goods and vibrant commerce while having quite inept military. The second major power was the Mongols. You can look up the rest.

USA stresses the military types of pressures, and seeing its position slipping too far, they may resort to a series of gigantic "provocations" -- from confiscation of property by fiat, like they did to Venezuela, to piracy on open seas, no cargoes can move without their approval and tribute, from there things can escalate toward nuclear war.

More generally, western decline leads to decrease of wealth affecting the lower classes first but gradually reaching higher, enmity toward competitors, then hatred, such processes can have dire consequences.

Importantly, these are speculations, so stopping short of spelling them out is reasonable. However, give some credit to Lieven for "the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War".

Noirette , Sep 24 2020 16:24 utc | 108
On the rule-based world order. Scattered thoughts.

The article by Lieven was good in one aspect: it at least mentioned the crazy economic template aka imho 'religion' that lead to a part of this mess. For the rest, hmm. The 'rules based international order' was always pretty much a phoney scaffold, used for presentation to hide, cover up, legitimised many goings on (after WW2 I mean.)

Like a power-point extolling xyz product, with invented or 'massaged' charts and all., with tick boxes for what it positive or followed. (Fairness, Democracy, etc. etc. as 'Natural' 'Organic' etc. Total BS.)

In these kinds of discussions I am always reminded of the 'rights of the child' which in CH are taught in grade 3-5, with a boiled down text, logo type pix, etc. It is very tough on teachers, and they often only pretend to push the content. There are many immigrant children in CH and the natives know that the 'rights' are not respected and not just in 'jungles' (anarchist / animalistic hot spots) as they say. The kids go nuts - as they still more or less believe that they 'have a voice' as it called -- the parents follow the kids, lotsa troubles. OK, these are aspirations - but 'democracy' (purposely used as a calling card following advice from a well-know ad agency..) is so as well. And presenting aspirations that can't possibly be achieved in any way, when not a smiley joke about meeting God or flying to Mars, and is socially important, is not well received.

Anyway, since the invasion of Iraq (totally illegal according to any standards) leading to the biggest demos in the world ever, a loud indignant cry, which invasion the UN condoned, ppl (in my experience, in CH, F, It) no longer have a shred of belief in 'international rules'. Which of course makes them more 'nationalist' in the sense of acting in the community, close at hand, as the Intl order is a shit-scene.

Passer by , Sep 24 2020 20:06 utc | 109
Do you have sources for the last two facts, about China overtaking the US as main trading partner to Europe and as retail market?

Posted by: fx | Sep 24 2020 11:41 utc | 105

China becomes EU's top trading partner from Jan-July: Eurostat

https://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/202009/17/WS5f63070da31024ad0ba7a2fa.html

China retail market expected to overtake US this year

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/china-overtake-u-world-largest-135614391.html

https://www.asiatimesfinancial.com/we-will-be-top-economy-by-year-end-china-media-outlet-says

[Sep 25, 2020] Andre Vltchek was a great warrior, the world was kept informed by this wonderful spirit and passionate mind. I am very sad to hear of his passing.

Sep 25, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

uncle tungsten , Sep 22 2020 22:15 utc | 34

Colm O' Toole #26
Andre Vltchek whose done some great reporting on China, Russia, and the Middle East over the years was found dead today in Turkey.

Vale great warrior, the world was kept informed by this wonderful spirit and passionate mind. I am very sad to hear of his passing.

His works.

David G , Sep 22 2020 22:23 utc | 35
Colm O' Toole | Sep 22 2020 21:41 utc | 26:

I learned about places I've never been reading Vltchek. He will be missed by many.

Jen , Sep 22 2020 23:03 utc | 38
Colm O'Toole @ 26, Uncle Tungsten @ 32, David G @ 33:

I am also sad to hear of Andre Vltchek's passing. He used to be an occasional contributor to Off-Guardian.org.

His death is being treated as suspicious by Turkish police authorities. I myself am rather puzzled by the decision to travel overnight by car from Samsun to Istanbul, given his state of health (according to the report that Colm O'Toole linked to) and the length of the car journey (about nine hours) when he could have travelled by plane.

willie , Sep 23 2020 7:20 utc | 64
R.I.P DR.Stephen Cohen.

R.I.P. Andre Vitchek.

Maybe his latest outcry hindered some :

https://www.opednews.com/articles/Now-West-Should-Sit-On-Its-by-Andre-Vltchek-Brainwashing_China_Colonialism_Denial-200912-597.html

[Sep 24, 2020] We have lost a real giant (Stephen F. Cohen has died)! by Saker

Notable quotes:
"... Cohen had the courage to take on the entire ruling elites of this country and their messianic supremacist ideology by himself, almost completely alone. ..."
"... He opposed the warmongering nutcases during the Cold War, and he opposed them again when they replaced their rabid hatred of the Soviet Union with an even more rabid hatred of everything Russian. ..."
Sep 24, 2020 | thesaker.is

First, he was a man of immense kindness and humility . Second, he was a man of total intellectual honesty . I can't say that Cohen and I had the same ideas or the same reading of history, though in many cases we did, but here is what I found so beautiful in this man: unlike most of his contemporaries, Cohen was not an ideologue , he did not expect everybody to agree with him, and he himself did not vet people for ideological purity before offering them his friendship.

Even though it is impossible to squeeze a man of such immense intellect and honesty into any one single ideological category, I would say that Stephen Cohen was a REAL liberal , in the original, and noble, meaning of this word.

I also have to mention Stephen Cohen's immense courage . Yes, I know, Cohen was not deported to GITMO for his ideas, he was not tortured in a CIA secret prison, and he was not rendered to some Third Word country to be tortured there on behalf of the USA. Stephen Cohen had a different kind of courage: the courage to remain true to himself and his ideals even when the world literally covered him in slanderous accusations, the courage to NOT follow his fellow liberals when they turned PSEUDO-liberals and betrayed everything true liberalism stands for. Professor Cohen also completely rejected any forms of tribalism or nationalism, which often made him the target of vicious hatred and slander, especially from his fellow US Jews (he was accused of being, what else, a Putin agent).

Cohen had the courage to take on the entire ruling elites of this country and their messianic supremacist ideology by himself, almost completely alone.

Last, but most certainly not least, Stephen Cohen was a true peacemaker , in the sense of the words of the Holy Gospel I quoted above. He opposed the warmongering nutcases during the Cold War, and he opposed them again when they replaced their rabid hatred of the Soviet Union with an even more rabid hatred of everything Russian.

I won't claim here that I always agreed with Cohen's ideas or his reading of history, and I am quite sure that he would not agree with much of what I wrote. But one thing Cohen and I definitely did agree on: the absolute, number one, priority of not allowing a war to happen between the USA and Russia. It would not be an exaggeration to say that Stephen Cohen dedicated his entire life towards this goal.

... ... ...

[Sep 24, 2020] Stephen F. Cohen, 1938–2020 - The Nation

Sep 24, 2020 | www.thenation.com

first "met" Steve through his 1977 essay "Bolshevism and Stalinism." His cogent, persuasive, revisionist argument that there are always alternatives in history and politics deeply influenced me. And his seminal biography, Bukharin and the Bolshevik Revolution , challenging prevailing interpretations of Soviet history, was to me, and many, a model of how biography should be written: engaged and sympathetically critical.

At the time, I was too accepting of conventional wisdom. Steve's work -- and soon, Steve himself -- challenged me to be critical-minded, to seek alternatives to the status quo, to stay true to my beliefs (even if they weren't popular), and to ask unpopular questions of even the most powerful. These are values I carry with me to this day as editorial director of The Nation , which Steve introduced me to (and its editor, Victor Navasky) and for which he wrote a column ("Sovieticus") from 1982 to 1987, and many articles and essays beginning in 1979. His last book, War with Russia? was a collection of dispatches (almost all posted at thenation.com ) distilled from Steve's weekly radio broadcasts -- beginning in 2014–on The John Batchelor Show .

T he experiences we shared in Moscow beginning in 1980 are in many ways my life's most meaningful. Steve introduced me to realms of politics, history, and life I might never have experienced: to Bukharin's widow, the extraordinary Anna Mikhailovna Larina, matriarch of his second family, and to his eclectic and fascinating circle of friends -- survivors of the Gulag, (whom he later wrote about in The Victims Return ) dissidents, and freethinkers -- both outside and inside officialdom.

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From 1985 to 1991, when we lived frequently in Moscow, we shared the intellectual and political excitement, the hopes and the great achievements of those perestroika years. We later developed a close friendship with Mikhail Gorbachev, a man we both deeply admired as an individual and as a political leader who used his power so courageously to change his country and the world. Gorbachev also changed our lives in several ways.

Our marriage coincided with perestroika . In fact, Steve spent the very first day after our wedding, our so-called honeymoon, at the United Nations with Gorbachev and the news anchor Dan Rather (Steve was consulting for CBS News at the time). Then, on our first anniversary, in 1989, we were with President Bush (the first) and Gorbachev on Malta when they declared the end of the Cold War. And we think of our daughter, Nika, now 29 years old, as a perestroika baby because she was conceived in Russia during the Gorbachev years, made her first visit to Moscow in July 1991 and since then has been back some 40 times. In a moving moment, a year after Raisa Maksimovna died, Gorbachev remarked to Steve that our marriage and partnership reminded him of his with Raisa because we too seemed inseparable.

Steve has often regretted that many of the Russian friends he made after 1985 did not know about his earlier Moscow life. He first visited the Soviet Union in 1959. But it was those pre- perestroika years, 1975 to 1982, that gave Steve what he once told me was his "real education. Not only in Russian society but in Russian politics, because I began to understand the connection between trends in society, trends in the dissident movement, and trends in the nomenklatura." They were "utterly formative years for me."

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They also informed his writings, especially his pathbreaking book Rethinking the Soviet Experience , which was published at the very time Gorbachev came to power. "There was a lot of tragedy," Steve used to say, "but also a lot of humor and warmth when people had little more that personal friendships and ideas to keep them company." From 1980, when I first traveled to Moscow with Steve, to 1982 when neither of us could get a visa (until 1985 when Gorbachev became leader), we lived in that Russia, spending many nights in friends' apartments and kitchens drinking into the night, and listening to uncensored, often pessimistic, thinking about the present and future of Russia.

I later became Steve's collaborator in smuggling samizdat manuscripts out of Russia to the West, and bringing samizdat books back to Russia and distributing them. By the time I joined him, Steve had managed to send dozens of such books to Moscow, and satisfying friends with a selection ranging from Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Varlam Shalamov, George Orwell, and Robert Conquest to the Kama Sutra and, of course, the samizdat version of Steve's own book on Bukharin. I learned from Steve that one had to keep forbidden documents and manuscripts on one's person at all times, knowing that the KGB frequently searched apartments and hotel rooms. At a certain point, Steve's shoulder bag became so heavy that he developed a hernia on his right side. After surgery, he started carrying his bag on his left side, but developed a second hernia there, as well. He liked to say that the worst the KGB ever did to him was to cause him two hernias!

In fact, it was samizdat manuscripts that first brought us together. In 1978, Steve heard that I had a diplomatic passport, which would have exempted me from a customs search, and was about to travel to Moscow. (At the time my father was the United States representative to the United Nations in Geneva.) Through a mutual friend, Steve asked if I would bring out samizdat documents being held for him in Moscow. I would have been happy to do so, but Steve had been misinformed. I didn't have a diplomatic passport.

S teve could sometimes seem like a tough guy, but those who won his trust knew he was a person of great generosity, loyalty, and kindness. He was known in our New York City neighborhood on the Upper West Side as an impresario/organizer and longtime supporter of basketball tournaments for local, often poor, kids. In the United States and Russia, Steve mentored and supported young scholars. In the last decade, he set up fellowships for young scholars of Russian history at the several universities where he'd he studied and taught: Indiana University, Princeton, New York University, and Columbia. He lent his support to the establishment of Moscow's State Museum of the History of the Gulag -- and to its young director and team.

Life with Steve was never boring. He was supremely independent, the true radical in our family, unfailingly going to the root of the problem. He spoke his mind. He had a CD with a dozen variations of "My Way" -- from Billy Bragg to Frank Sinatra. And as The Chronicle of Higher Education subtitled its 2017 profile of Steve, he "was the most controversial Russia expert in America."

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Through all our years together, Steve was my backbone, fortifying me for the battles Nation editors must wage (often with their own writers, sometimes including Steve!), and giving me the personal and political courage to do the right thing. But never more so than when we entered what might be called the "Russiagate era."

While Steve liked to say it's healthy to rethink, to have more questions than answers, there was a wise consistency to his political analysis. For example, as is clear from his many articles in The Nation in these last decades, he unwaveringly opposed American Cold War thinking both during the Cold War and since the end of the Soviet Union. He was consistent in his refusal to sermonize, lecture, or moralize about what Russia should do. He preferred to listen rather than preach, to analyze rather than demonize.

This stance was no recipe for popularity, which Steve professed to care little about. He was courageous and fearless in continuing to question the increasingly rigid orthodoxies about the Soviet Union and Russia. But in the last months, such criticism did take its toll on him. Along with others who sought to avert a new and more dangerous Cold War, Steve despaired that the public debate so desperately needed had become increasingly impossible in mainstream politics or media. Until his death he'd been working on a short article about what he saw as the "criminalization of détente." The organization he established, the American Committee on East-West Accord, tried mightily to argue for a more sane US policy toward Russia.

He fared better than I often did confronting the controversies surrounding him since 2014, in reaction to his views on Ukraine, Putin, election interference, and more. Positions he took often elicited slurs and scurrilous attacks. How many times could he be labeled "Putin's puppet"? "Putin's No.1 American apologist"? Endlessly, it seemed. But Steve chose not to respond directly to the attacks, believing -- as he told me many times when I urged him to respond -- that they offered no truly substantive criticism of his arguments, but were merely ad hominem attacks. What he did write about -- he was increasingly concerned about the fate of a younger generation of scholars -- was the danger of smearing those who thought differently about US policy toward Russia, thereby silencing skeptics and contributing to the absence of a needed debate in our politics, media, and academy.

M ikhail Gorbachev often told Steve how deeply influenced he was by his writings, especially his biography of Bukharin. Steve first met Gorbachev in 1987 at the Soviet Embassy in Washington. It was a reception for America's "progressive intelligentsia" -- which Steve found funny, because he considered himself a maverick and didn't like labels. But he was there that day, and within a few minutes a Kremlin aide told Steve that the general secretary wanted to talk to him. Minutes later, Mikhail Sergeevich approached and asked Steve, assuming the author of Bukharin and the Bolshevik Revolution must be eminent and of a "serious" age: " Deistvitelno [really] -- you wrote the book, or was it your father?"

Steve finally achieved that "serious" age Gorbachev spoke of! But his heart, spirit and mind remained youthful till the very end. Maybe it's because of his love of Jerry Lee Lewis's rock and roll, or New Orleans blues or Kentucky bluegrass, or his passion for basketball (shared with our daughter Nika and his 16-year-old grandson, Lucas), or his quest for a good anecdote (his annual anecdote lectures at Princeton and later NYU drew large crowds). Maybe it's because we continued our walks in nearby Riverside Park for as long as was possible -- walks full of loving and spirited argument and talk. Perhaps it's because, while Steve was a very serious person, he didn't take himself seriously.

O n Saturday, Mikhail Gorbachev sent these words about Steve:

Dear Katrina,
Please accept my sincere condolences on Steve's passing. He was one of the closest people to me in his views and understanding of the enormous events that occurred in the late 1980s in Russia and changed the world.
Steve was a brilliant historian and a man of democratic convictions. He loved Russia, the Russian intelligentsia, and believed in our country's future.
I always considered Steve and you my true friends. During perestroika and all the subsequent years, I felt your understanding and unwavering support. I thank you both.
Dear Katrina, I feel deep sympathy for your grief and I mourn together with you and Nika.
Blessed memory for Steve.
I embrace you,
Mikhail Gorbachev
19.09.20

F or 40 years, Steve was my partner, companion, co-conspirator, best friend, fellow traveler, mentor, husband (for 32 years), co-author. I will be forever grateful to him for introducing me to The Nation , to Russia, for a life that has been full of shared adventure, friendship and passion, and for our beloved daughter, Nika. MOST POPULAR 1

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Katrina vanden Heuvel TWITTER Katrina vanden Heuvel is editorial director and publisher of The Nation , America's leading source of progressive politics and culture. She served as editor of the magazine from 1995 to 2019.


Herbert Weiner says:

September 22, 2020 at 11:53 pm

My condolences for the passing of Stephen who fought the post Cold War policies against Russia with a balanced analysis--so contradictory to the intellectuals who gloat in our victory and are unrealistic to the "threat" posed by Russia which desperately needs peace and friendship with the West and, especially, us. He has shown that you can criticism and condemn Stalinism while also condemning our anti-Soviet policies. He walked that tightrope which I applaud. May his memory be a blessing.

Erwin Borda says: September 22, 2020 at 10:44 pm

Dear Katrina, at this time of America's political confusion, pain and intellectual despair, the lost of Steve is really big. He has been a source of inspiration to many, and the true defender of Russia in the middle of political adversity. Steve being an intellectual giant always exposed his ideas in a humble and honest way. What a lost for America and for the world!
Rest in Peace Steve! And for you Katrina and Nika my most sincere condolences!
God Bless you all!

Valera Bochkarev says: September 22, 2020 at 8:56 am

Boots, Applebaums, Kristols and Joffes of this world will come and go as specks of dirt clogging up our civilization while never measuring up to courageous moral and intellectual giants like Professor Cohen. His intellect, insight and humility will always be a shining beacon for those that have high hopes for humanity. Rest in peace, Steve Cohen. You've led a righteous and honorable life, Sir.

Pierre Guerlain says: September 22, 2020 at 2:43 am

I started reading Steve's articles in connection with the conspiracy theory that Russiagate is and then I watched many videos of him in interviews. I came to admire such a courageous man who was slandered by people who knew nothing, nothing about Russia, the country Steve knew so well but also nothing about geopolitics, international relations and the tricks of intel services. Always competent and with a gift for clear exposition, Steve warned about what is one of the gravest dangers: war with Russia. I too admired Gorbachev and saw how he was hoodwinked by people who unknowingly prepared Putin's rise. A great courageous thinker is gone and we miss him.

Ann Wright says: September 21, 2020 at 7:53 pm

I admired Steve's perspective from 1992 when I was in the second group that wasIn the US Embassy in Tashkent, Uzbekistan and two years later with the Us Embassy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan for two years from 1994-1996. I've been back to Russia twice in the past three years and I agree totally with His view of the stupidity of another Cold War!!!

John Stewart says: September 21, 2020 at 5:12 pm

Katrina, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. I took two courses with Professor Cohen at Princeton in 1973 and 1974, and he was without question the best lecturer I had in seven years of higher education. He became my intellectual mentor, although I was too shy to ever really talk with him. I graduated in Politics and Russian Studies in 1977, and he was an inspiration. I am especially saddened by his death because I have been thinking of picking up Russian studies soon when I retire and I wanted his advice on where I should do a Masters degree, with whom, and what topics needed someone to pick up. He was a great man, and a voice of sense about Russia. He will be greatly missed.

John Connolly says: September 21, 2020 at 3:10 pm

Dear Katrina: Thank You for this personal sharing of Your life with Stephen Cohen; and sincere condolences to You, Nika and Lucas.
I really appreciate Your clarity and candor about the unique position Steve occupied in the academic, intellectual and political firmament ... never completely clear to me until Your explication. Steve regularly engaged and sometimes enraged me with some of his positions -- some of them seeming to me ill-considered defenses of cloddish Stalinist bureaucrats or malevolent Russian authoritarians ... but I read everything he wrote in 'The Nation' and anywhere else I came across him. As a longtime Trotskyist/ Socialist I could find plenty to argue about with Brother Cohen, but also found great appreciation for the fact that almost no one else was currently thinking and writing about Russia or the Soviet experience with the rigor, insight, depth of experience and skill that Stephen owned and shared with us all. It goes without saying he will be missed by You his dearest and closest ones; but he will be sorely missed too by those of us in Your extended 'Nation' Family, and the Progressive millions he so widely taught and influenced to 'think different'.

[Sep 24, 2020] Putin And Trump vs The New World Order- The Final Battle

Sep 24, 2020 | orientalreview.org

When Vladimir Putin got charge of Russia, there was no sign that he would do better than the drunk he had replaced. An ex KGB officer seemed like a choice more driven by nostalgia rather than ideology, but Putin had many more assets going for him than first met the eyes: patriotism, humanism, a sense of justice, cunning ruse, a genius economist friend named Sergey Glazyev whom openly despised the New World Order, but above all, he embodied the reincarnation of the long lost Russian ideology of total political and economical independence. After a few years spent at draining the Russian swamp from the oligarchs and mafiosis that his stumbling predecessor had left in his trail of empty bottles, Vlad rolled his sleeves and got to work.

Because his opponents had been looting the planet for 250 years through colonization insured by a military dominance, Vlad knew that he had to start by building an invincible military machine. And he did. He came up with different types of hypersonic missiles that can't be stopped, the best defensive systems on the planet, the best electronic jamming systems, and the best planes. Then to make sure that a nuclear war wouldn't be an option, he came up with stuff which nightmares are made of, such as the Sarmat, the Poseidon and the Avangard, all unstoppable and able to destroy any country in a matter of a few hours.

Putin said that Russia is the only country in the world that has hypersonic weapons even though its military spending is a fraction of the U.S. military budget. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, left, and Chief of General Staff of Russia Valery Gerasimov, right, attend the meeting.

With a new and unmatched arsenal, he could proceed to defeat any NATO force or any of its proxies, as he did starting in September 2015 in Syria. He proved to every country that independence from the NWO banking system was now a matter of choice. Putin not only won the Syrian war, but he won the support of many New World Order countries that suddenly switched sides upon realizing how invincible Russia had become. On a diplomatic level, it also got mighty China by its side, and then managed to protect independent oil producers such as Venezuela and Iran, while leaders like Erdogan of Turkey and Muhammad Ben Salman of Saudi Arabia decided to side with Russia, who isn't holding the best poker hand, but the whole deck of cards.

Ending in the conclusion that Putin now controls the all-mighty oil market, the unavoidable energy resource that lubricates economies and armies, while the banksters' NATO can only watch, without any means to get it back. With the unbelievable results that Putin has been getting in the last five years, the New World Order suddenly looks like a house of cards about to crumble. The Empire of Banks has been terminally ill for five years, but it's now on morphine, barely realizing what's going on.

Tragedy and hope

Since there is no hope in starting WW3 which is lost in advance, the last banzai came out of the bushes in the shape of a virus and the ensuing media creation of a fake pandemic. The main focus was to avoid a catastrophic hyperinflation of the humongous mass of US dollar that no one wants anymore, to have time to implement their virtual world crypto-currency, as if the chronically failing bankers still have any legitimacy to keep controlling our money supplies. It seemed at first that the plan could work. That's when Vlad took out his revolver to start the Russian roulette game and bankers blew their brains out upon the pressure on the trigger.

He called a meeting with OPEC and killed the price of oil by refusing to lower Russia's production, taking the barrel to under 30 dollars. Without any afterthought and certainly even less remorse, Vlad killed the costly Western oil production. All the dollars that had been taken out of the market had to be re-injected by the Fed and other central banks to avoid a downslide and the final disaster. By now, our dear bankers are out of solutions.

... ... ..

The New World Order is facing the two most powerful countries on the planet, and this fake pandemic changed everything. It showed how desperate the banksters are, and if we don't want to end up with nuclear warheads flying in both directions, Putin and Trump have to stop them now.

Terminate the BIS, the World Bank, the IMF, the European Central bank, the EU, NATO, now. Our world won't be perfect, but it might get much better soon.

Easter resurrection is coming. This might get biblical.

[Sep 24, 2020] What's With The Rich-Kid Revolutionaries- - Zero Hedge

Sep 24, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Zachary Yost via The Mises Institute,

By now, readers are no doubt familiar with the sight of angry mobs smashing windows, looting stores, and harassing pedestrians and street diners around the country , supposedly in the name of advocating for the rights of black Americans. Around the country, these mobs are diverse and have diverse motives, ranging from simply wanting to loot and get free stuff to being driven by deeply held ideological beliefs. However, one can't help but notice that in many places a significant number of those causing disturbances are not the subjects of the state oppression in question, but are often white and sometimes even affluent, and as a result are almost completely isolated from the consequences of their destructive sprees.

Portland, site of over a hundred straight days of protests and often violent rioting, seems like the poster child for this phenomenon. Portland is, in fact, the whitest big city in the US.

In New York City, the Daily Mail reported on the recent arrest of seven members of the New Afrikan Black Panther Party, a revolutionary Maoist group, after a rioting spree that caused at least $100,000 in damages. Every one of them appears to be white from their mugshots , and among them are an art director who has done work for Pepsi and Samsung, a model and actress, and the son of famous comic book writers. The New York Post profiled one rioter, twenty-year-old Clara Kraebber, and discovered that her mother runs her own architecture firm and her father is a psychiatrist who teaches at Columbia University. The family paid $1.8 million in 2016 for their New York City apartment and also own a home in Connecticut with four fireplaces.

Or consider Vicky Osterweil, the white author of the much-discussed book In Defense of Looting , who is also the daughter of a college professor. As Matt Taibbi reports in his review of the book, "there's little evidence the author of In Defense of Looting has ever been outside" and "she confesses to a 'personal aversion to violence,' lamenting a 'refusal to attack property' that 'does not lessen the degree to which I benefit from systems of domination.'" In Taibbi's words "this is a 288-page book written by a Very Online Person in support of the idea that other people should loot, riot, and burn things in the real world."

Rioting by the affluent is not limited to white people either. Consider the case of the two nonwhite attorneys, one of whom received his law degree at Princeton, whose arrest for throwing a molotov cocktail at a riot in New York City made the headlines precisely because of their high-status, well-paying jobs.

What all of these examples have in common is that the rioting and destruction, or advocacy for the same, is being perpetrated by people who have no skin in the game and will not be exposed to the long-term consequences for the people and communities that they are ostensibly trying to help. Neighborhoods that suffer through riots often end up economically depressed for decades to come, but people like Clara Kraebber will not have to worry about such things.

In the last century, there has been a great deal of scholarship attempting to discover the roots of these kinds of widespread revolutionary movements. In Liberalism , Mises discusses the idea of a Fourier complex, where antiliberal revolutionary ideas are adopted by people as a means of dealing with their own inadequacy in the face of reality. Political theorist Eric Voegelin (who attended Mises's Vienna seminars) also posits a similar, though more complex, explanation with his theory of gnosticism.

The classically liberal sociologist Helmut Schoeck also makes a similar argument in his book Envy . Envy, Schoeck argues, stems from an individual's reaction to a personal inadequacy and a desire to find a way to shift the blame to anyone or anything other than himself. Like Mises and Voegelin, Schoeck explores the ways in which this attitude is detrimental to society, but he also explores why some people engaged in revolutionary movements are themselves well off and not members of the toiling masses they seek to "liberate."

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In these cases Schoeck argues that such people are not afflicted with envy, but rather with a fear of envy or the guilt of being unequal. He argues that "the guilt-tinged fear of being thought unequal is very deeply ingrained in the human psyche," and that it can be observed everywhere from offices to schools in the way in which people who excel at something will consciously or unconsciously lower their performance. This phenomenon is unfortunate enough when it comes to the workplace, but when it comes to politics the consequences can be much more serious.

Schoeck argues that such guilt may lead a person to forgo their old life in order to serve the less fortunate but that many times such a person does not seek to extirpate their guilt by leaving their own comfortable station, but rather by insisting that the entire world must join them in eradicating inequality. In his words "I have no doubt that one of the most important motives for joining an egalitarian political movement is this anxious sense of guilt: 'Let us set up a society where no one is envious.'"

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No doubt even Schoeck would be impressed by the degree to which our current upheavals are driven by those wracked with the guilt of being unequal rather than those filled with envy itself. To be sure, there is no shortage of such envious people running around these days, but there can be no doubt about which group is the driving force.

Hopefully, as social life slowly returns to normal and as the weather gets colder, the guilt-ridden rich kids will tire out from playacting as revolutionaries and return home. But until then, it seems that the rest of us will be forced to suffer as they work out their psychological problems through some window-smashing therapy.

DEDA CVETKO , 2 hours ago

Just a friendly reminder to the author of the article:

Some of the most vicious and violent revolutionaries throughout human history were the scions of aristocracy or descendants of extremely rich and affluent families: Jean-Paul Marat, Girolamo Savonarola, Felix Dzerzhinsky, Simon Bolivar, Fidel Castro, Sun Yat-Sen, Che Guevara, Louis Auguste Blanqui, Oliver Cromwell, Friedrich Engels, etc, etc....all either came from the very rich family background or descended from the blue-bloods and nobility. Mao Zedong's father was one of the richest farmers in all of China, just as Trotsky's dad was one of the richest farmers in Russian Ukraine. Mohandas Gandhi was a brahmin. Count Mirabeau was a, well...count. Ataturk's father was one of the richest people in Salonica, Greece. Louis Philippe II - who sided with Robespierre - was of the royal blood, the first cousin of Louis XVI whose trial and execution he personally endorsed and supported. And, oh....lest I forget...Nelson Mandela was no slouch in the class pedigree department, either.

I could go on forever and ever.

In fact, impoverished and pauperized revolutionaries were always but a tiny subset of the revolutionary class. People like Stalin, Gramsci or Tito were always an aberrant group, an exception to the general rule.

One can probably write a very thick tome about the rich and aristocratic abandoning their social stratus in order to side with the dispossessed and disenfranchised. This is far from being a new and heretofore unknown phenomenon.

I am leaving it to the historians and political psychologists to explain why this is so. Personally, I think that the inherent cynicism and hypocrisy of their own families is a perfectly good reason to switch sides. Another possible reason is that the poor and hungry people are typically too busy surviving and feeding themselves to be organizing violent overthrow of the ruling class.

truth hound , 1 hour ago

They are knowingly in on the psyop. By DECEPTION, though shalt do war.

DEDA CVETKO , 1 hour ago

Possibly some but definitely not all. It would require a much more detailed psychological profile to figure out what went on in these people's heads. I myself am just visiting this cluster**** of galaxies, what the fvck do I know about how and why the humans behave?

Blue_Rock , 1 hour ago

A very good post. I will add anger and rebellion by the youths. The realization that they somehow don't measure up and that they might not be able to use that gender studies lesbian basket weaving diploma to get ahead. I have personally seen more than one inherited fortune lost and business run into the ground by spoiled entitled heirs.

DEDA CVETKO , 1 hour ago

I have personally seen more than one inherited fortune lost and business run into the ground by spoiled entitled heirs.

This is the Law of Entropy on display: each subsequent iteration is only a paler and paler version of the preceding one. This is why the caste and class-based societies can't endure forever: the forces and ideas that guide them simply aren't genetically suited to perpetuate themselves in their original, integral form. Sooner or later, the integrity of the founding father(s) dissipates into degeneration and devolution.

algol_dog , 2 hours ago

An interesting note to history. The initiators of these movements are the first to go once the new regime takes over. Once the new leaders get in charge they realize the danger of having them around and quickly dispense with them. Examples being the Stalin purges and Hitler's breaking of the SA.

Utopia Planitia , 2 hours ago

"What's With The Rich-Kid Revolutionaries?"

Safe spaces, exclusively female teachers, participation trophies, no siblings (nobody to kick you in the face growing up when you are being an asswipe), never a harsh word, no discipline, constantly being told you are "special", etc. etc. That's just a start.

not dead yet , 1 hour ago

Long before there were the things you mentioned there were rich kids doing rioting and looting. Back in the sixties it was rich kids made to feel guilty about being rich by their commie professors. Came from good families with a decent upbringing gone bad by propaganda. Same kids would go home during breaks and argue with their families how they made their money off the backs of the workers. Typical commie stuff. Unlike today back then they made bombs and blew stuff up killing people with many of the bomb makers rich kids. Robberies for the cause. The parents of the slimy San Francisco DA are serving life for killing a guard while robbing an armored car. Idiot was then raised by Bill Ayers after his parents were arrested.

motley331 , 3 hours ago

ALL of these people are useful idiots for the likes of Soros...

truthseeker47 , 1 hour ago

Leader of the violent Weather Underground and self-described communist revolutionary Bill Ayers came from a very upper class suburban Chicago family.

Ignant Bastad , 1 hour ago

neglected and unloved as a child, so he spends his life "getting back at" his parents? just a guess.

PGR88 , 2 hours ago

More importantly, those rich white kids out there burning 7-11s downtown are displaying yet more entitlement. They've never faced consequences their whole life. Imagine if some counter-protestor swung a bat at them, or small businessman defending his property shot them? It would be an quick education in consequences.

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Arctic_Fox , 1 hour ago

When they don't get shot, it's another manifestation of their white-assed privilege.

Plus, Progressive mayors tell the cops not to play hardball with the rioters, and even if a few get busted the Soros-backed DA drops charges. Then if it does go to court, some faculty lounge kook is on the bench as judge, and there are OJ juries to nullify the prosecution... so they walk.

Privilege from start to finish...

Kind of makes you wonder why we even bother with this government-thing.

hoffstetter , 2 hours ago

People learn from their friends. I know tech millionaires that don't have a clue about what's going on outside their own circle jerk echo chamber of "friends" that repeat leftist talking points as if they were Catholics reciting the rosary. Occasionally, I get one to admit that the stuff they're spouting is completely unsupported after tossing them a few videos or transcripts that contradict what they thought was reality, but they just find something else to which they can redirect that is completely unsupported and irrefutable as it's nonexistent. These aren't kids. They've been around for decades but never left their cubicles or their monitors and were extremely competent in their jobs, so now they think they know everything because they knew one thing. It's extremely common.

hmmmm , 2 hours ago

Maslow's hierarchy of needs explains why a disproportionate amount of shallow thinking rich kids are involved in such causes. Regular folks are not focused on self actualization.

charlie_don't_surf , 2 hours ago

They are unaccomplished jealous little a-holes that can only tear down others to pretend to elevate themselves.

Why123 , 2 hours ago

Alexis De Tocqueville analyzed the United States in the early 19th century, before Germany was a country under the Kaisers. He predicted that the United States and Russia would be the world's superpowers in the 20th century. With respect to the United States, he predicted that we would be a preeminent superpower because 1) we didn't have permanent concentrations of wealth (for example, if a rich guy had six kids, his plantation would be evenly distributed in at least two generations) and 2) we focused exclusively on practical education, not the theoretical ******** that dominated European academia, and which could only benefit the aristocracy and absurdly intelligent proles (think Euclid or Gauss). With respect to both Russia and the United States, he saw that both populations had the capacity to sacrifice and overcome adversity (although different types of adversity). Those advantages have been eviscerated. We don't focus on practical education. We have permanent, feudal levels, of wealth, and the population has no will to sacrifice. The university system and institutionalization of the United States was fundamental towards achieving those aims.

It comes down to the needs of every human being, rich or poor, to feel achievement and the specific needs of the rich. These kids have real money because they own assets that replicate more money, without work. I won't get into tax, trade and immigration policies that take an already advantageous position enjoyed by these pricks to the next level of oligarchy. But that isn't enough. You have to impose your value system and "skills" as the objective value system. You see, these kids want the advantage of the wealth, but they want to demolish the path to achieving wealth by others. The university system has to be the ONLY functioning economic path. What would happen if kids knew from a young age that the name of the game is to save and acquire asserts, and all other pursuits are meaningless? Do you think we would have a student loan problem? Do you think we would have an inequality problem? The answer is a resounding "no." The education system is designed to destroy. It blinds you to this indisputable truth. There are people who see through the BS though (more on this later). As long as there is some freedom, these problem will rise up the dominance hierarchy. These rich kids don't like that. These rich kids and their academic professors deeply resent that. This is why they have to tear down the system. Their privilege will be preserved, but the rest of the population will be enslaved. If they have their way, every single young person in the United Stares will have the "benefit" of attending university and having a "fulfilling career." Well have people in school until their thirties, learning useless crap, and in permanent debt bondage. This cements the rich kids' status,

Anecdotally, I was speaking to friends from high school. Most of us are professionals. Some work in law enforcement, some work as engineers, some as lawyers, a few unionized tradespeople and one doctor. The unionized trades people blow all of us out of the water, but that's not the startling thing. One of our friends went straight to work at 16. He's not even a real "tradesman." His father, mother, three sister and himself worked three jobs and saved aggressively. They bought a first multifamily in 2005. They now have 70 buildings. The first building, as my one friend put it, "caused a snowballs effect." That's the American way. That's the American dream. The American dream is not going to school until you are in your fu**** late twenties or mid thirties to go churn and burn on a W-2. For the prick with an inheritance, that may be useful because he or she has wealth, and he or she can, especially in light of Boomer cultural norms, pretend that the source of wealth is the education, but deep inside they know the truth, and they resent the system because it still allows it and a small number of people manage to rise as a result. These people are at the top of the food chain. This offends these rich university assholes.

I chuckled when my friend who works for Homeland Security (Democrat) and my friend who works as an engineer for the Defense Industry (Republican) both stated "why didn't they teach us that in school?" Rofl. The point of the schools is that so you don't know the source of success. The point of school is to cement the rich kids advantage and destroy you. This causes a dual resentment: the poor kids feel resentment because they see they were sold a bag of goods and the rich kid feels resentment because he or she can't pretend the success is self induced.

I'll leave everyone with this: Donald Trump was called a racist, rapist, crook, liar, etc by Clinton in the 2016 campaign. That didn't bother him. The only thing that got him angry, ever, was when Clinton said he inherited money, which was the only thing that was true.

Dying-Of-The-Light , 2 hours ago

Kind of ironic that you have the thick-as-shxt, criminal end of blacks who want lots of bling without working for it, marching with middle class whites who have all the toys these blacks want. A real match made in hell. The sooner these black and white retards are given long prison sentences the better.

createnewaccount , 2 hours ago

Ironic? Maybe for the moment but watch this space, I expect the old Minsky quote also applies to the body politic.

" stability breeds instability "

-Hyman Minsky

Eastern Whale , 2 hours ago

The US government especially Trump, Pompeo and Nancy Pelosi seem to like the "peaceful" violence in Hong Kong. Nancy Pelosi even coined it a ""a beautiful sight to behold".

What goes around comes around, beware of what you are promoting overseas. Violence and War all in the name of WMD, Democracy and National Security.

Herodotus , 3 hours ago

Same thing was going on in 1968.

Also, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were rich kid revolutionaries.

fackbankz , 3 hours ago

George Washington was not from a particularly rich family. Jefferson was though.

Jack's Raging Bile Duct , 1 hour ago

It's pretty simple. Rich kids are idle, don't understand the value of anything, and commonly lazy. This is fertile ground for half-baked ideologies that run h

awesomepic4u , 3 hours ago

Revolutionary leftism is contemporary Western society's operating definition of nobility and heroism. Social elites have always justified themselves as being the people who fully live up to the ideal, and their young men in particular are supposed to earn their aristocratic honors by being the ones who run towards both good and evil rather than shrinking from them. Violence gets justified as being the ultimate test of personal commitment to an ideal, and it's a short road from there to arguing that violence must therefore be virtuous in itself.

If these kids feel guilty of anything, they feel guilty of sitting in classrooms and offices rather than exercising their powers to the fullest. A moral crusade with lots of opportunities for adrenaline-soaked adventure is an irresistible temptation.

Cheap Chinese Crap , 1 hour ago

I forget the exact context but I remember the story about an American couple who wondered if they should send their kids to an American or British university.

"That depends," their British friend replied,"on whether you want them back as radicals or homosexuals."

Now you get both.

sbin , 2 hours ago

Would be fun to move those BLM white tards to the real black neighborhoods.

Would produce a lot of racists.

My black friends do not want to live in a black majority neighborhood.

y_arrow
stinkypinky , 3 hours ago

Abused and angry children, lashing out at "the system" around them, being used by true revolutionaries (Marxists). The abuse angle is key - they want all vestiges of "the power structure" around them to be torn down, to get back at it all. Racism doesn't matter, sexism doesn't matter, none of these causes are actually cared about one iota. They would riot because it's Tuesday and 60 degrees outside as long as someone had a bullhorn, an umbrella and a brick. It certainly helps that racism is a thought crime you can accuse ANYONE OF, and it's been so loaded with meaning that it's a devastating attack of character which can't be defended against.

Bottom line: to understand why these rich kids are rioting look to how they've been abused.

4Y_LURKER , 2 hours ago

Yeah they are in reality human shields for the corporate apparently communist coup which is ongoing.

1Y4NixfGQ4MbMO4f , 3 hours ago

I think they are called "Useful idiots" or more descriptive would be "Disposable Idiots"

GRDguy , 29 seconds ago

Another generation of sociopaths, born to and indoctrined by sociopathic parents.

"Behind every great fortune lies a great crime," and a great number of victims.

smacker , 9 minutes ago

I believe there's a long history of rich kids being involved in revolutionary conduct.

They are invariably brought up in the shadow of dominating strict rich white parents and get to
an age where they want to cut out their own slice of life to establish themselves as independent
individuals, not clones. Adopting political extremes and crime is an easy way to do that.

Angular Momentum , 48 minutes ago

The industrial revolution has made life safe bland and comfortable for the middle class. It's easy to be moral when life is easy. In rough dangerous times and places living a life of integrity was a challenge and those who did it earned respect. But how can you be a hero in Suburbia? By heroically challenging common sense. The stupider the cause the harder it is to accept its ideas and thus the more heroic.

fcd443 , 58 minutes ago

Because these dipsh!ts didn't create their own wealth and they feel bad for all of their parents/generational wealth. They don't know the first thing when it comes to creating something and coming from nothing.

They want to feel as relevant as their priors so they do what they know best, throw a tantrum. In this case, it's called a peaceful protest aka black lives matter.

LeftandRightareWrong , 1 hour ago

Many people just want to be relevant. Why do sites like Facebook work?

Psychological, psychiatric pandemic in full force.

darkstar7646 , 2 hours ago

Couple of ideas:

  1. They know the game is over and that they will "fail" to live up to the legacy of their parents, costing their families everything in the process (which see the scam college-admissions scandals).
  2. They are trying to provoke a reaction among the White Right Militias ( agent provocateurs ).
  3. They feel they can get away with anything and are actually acti
Linda Hand , 3 hours ago

The education system is infested with communists.

DancingDragon , 3 hours ago

You mean the democrat party and their MSM sycophants

[Sep 24, 2020] Deceptive hope worked at Euromaidan in 2014 and now became major tool of fueling the protests by Leonid SAVIN

S o first neoliberal plunder the country dry and then they offer hope of "Eurointergation" as a carrot and organize a color revolution to overthouth the government. Is not this brilliant?
A nd as people want ot live "as in Europe" (often without understanding realities and seeing only tourist facade of the countries) this desire can become a door opener of the color revolution.
Another factor is that neoliberalism lifts the standard of living of top 10% or 5 % of the population and create powerful fifth column of compradors oriented on the West (a part of programmers and IT workers, large part of other well-paid professionals (such as corporate lawyers, medical professionals, etc), naive or crooked students, employees of joint ventures, etc) who can be relied on during the protest. Social network also simplify organization of frustrated underachievers and net hamsters for the protests.
Notable quotes:
"... From Ukraine's Euromaidan in 2014, we know that hope can be rather deceptive and elusive. It hovers within touching distance during protests and is an additional incentive, but it never becomes a reality. Disillusionment and frustration do not set in until it is already too late, by which time power has fallen into the hands of those who immediately tighten the screws and have no intention of discussing anything with the people. ..."
orientalreview.org

Colour revolutions and other forms of outside interference in state affairs are changing. This is both logical and natural, since government bodies adapt to change, find ways to counter threats, and retain the right to use legitimate force, which, according to Max Weber, is one of the features of the modern state. But no sooner do the world's leading centres for interference and destabilisation start feeling for new vulnerabilities in state systems than there is yet another attempted coup or an attack on a state system. This kind of instability is not desirable for any country, since it could gradually weaken the immunity of sovereignty. As a consequence, the transformation of protest movements should be of particular interest since, by understanding their development, it will be possible to predict protesters' and rioters' course of action. The protests in Belarus show that this is not what happened there, and the authorities were forced to respond quickly to the situation.

For an adequate understanding of anti-government strategies, it is necessary to turn, first of all, to the methods used by those organising the protests and coups.

In his article " Protests and Principles ", Srđa Popović, a well-known activist, organiser of colour revolutions and executive director of CANVAS, writes that the ideological and geopolitical factors focussed on by the media are insufficient to fully understand what's going on and evaluate the protests. He suggests paying attention to the structural conditions that differ in different countries, as well as the outcomes of movements. Popović concludes that the protests in recent years have shown a certain trend – "the traditional and institutional ways of creating change – elections, legal systems and dialogue with the elites – are insufficiently effective. So protesters have decided to utilize another form of power to force constructive change."

Executive director of CANVAS Srđa Popović

Further on, he asks: "If geography and ideology don't determine success, what does?" He outlines four key principles. One – a clear vision of the future. Two – a united opposition that should have a good understanding of who its allies are and who is neutral. Three – key pillars, which could be the media, business sectors, social institutions and government agencies (particularly security agencies that could be enticed over to the opposition). Four – attraction, which is a common element in many protest movements, since they position themselves as fighters of injustice.

At the same time, Popović admits that anger (and therefore also violence) is an effective tool for mobilisation, but it should be combined with hope, otherwise it will play a destructive role.

It is with a regretful sigh that Popović writes about the failed "revolutions" in Hong Kong and Venezuela, for which he partially blames the opposition. The problem with the former was the violence used against the police, and with the latter it was that Juan Guaidó put all his efforts into winning over the military and overthrowing Maduro with a coup.

In summary, Srđa Popović argues that initial conditions and context matter, but strategic skills matter even more. And it is difficult to disagree. After all, an initial flash of protest can be suppressed, activist cells can be liquidated, and crowds can be dispersed. And if there is no definite plan of action for how to act in a given situation, then any protest, whether peaceful or violent, will come to nothing.

Needless to say, the information in Popović's article is for naive readers and written with the utmost care so as to rule out any possible accusations of anti-state activities. All the advice is given from the standpoint of protecting democratic values. Therefore, one needs to be able to read between the lines and draw conclusions from past coups.

From Ukraine's Euromaidan in 2014, we know that hope can be rather deceptive and elusive. It hovers within touching distance during protests and is an additional incentive, but it never becomes a reality. Disillusionment and frustration do not set in until it is already too late, by which time power has fallen into the hands of those who immediately tighten the screws and have no intention of discussing anything with the people.

CANVAS, however, is an organisation that develops strategic action plans for particular countries. Judging by its recent online summer academy , CANVAS was actively involved in the overthrow of Bolivian President Evo Morales, supported protests in Sudan, Zimbabwe and Brazil, and has close ties with opposition groups in Malaysia, the Philippines and Georgia.

Peter Ackerman

Popović's views on the strategic planning of coups is shared by Peter Ackerman , former chair of the board of trustees of Freedom House, and board member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the NATO Atlantic Council. Ackerman believes that " the talented execution of even the simplest nonviolent tactics can alter the psychology of a population and the behavior of a regime ." He also believes that the consolidated efforts of hundreds of small organisations can have a cumulative effect and make it look like there is a unity of opinion and effort. This explains why, in Ukraine, the West actively supported both the radical nationalists and the liberals, which is basically like crossing a grass snake with a viper, given that these two groups have radically different ideologies. A similar situation can be seen in Belarus, where the muscle was provided by home-grown nationalists (symbolism associated with Nazi collaborators during the war was openly used at protests), while representatives of sexual minorities were included on various opposition councils.

The International Center on Nonviolent Conflict , which was founded by Ackerman and whose headquarters are in Washington, does similar work to CANVAS. In partnership with Rutgers University (New Jersey), the centre has been running online courses for activists since 2012. These not only cover the theory of protest movements and provide specific examples, but also adapt new techniques. It is noticeable that the course developers are seeking out new frontiers in resistance movements – how to exploit culture and religion, or how to target corporations (since corporations can be state-owned, by focusing on a problem related to the company's activities, attention can then be turned to the government itself).

George Soros's son Alexander Soros with Hashim Thachi

The activities of another institution, the United States Institute of Peace, cover 52 states , and, in a number of countries (such as China and Iran), they are carried out indirectly, using local agents and manipulating facts to its advantage. Thus, a recent report on Russia's interest in conflict zones states that " Russia's activities in conflict zones usually directly or indirectly run counter to Western interests ." The truth, however, is that it is the West's activities that run counter to the interests of Russia, which then has to respond in some way. Russia has no military bases in the Americas, whereas there are NATO bases and US troops on Russia's borders. Russian troops are in Syria legitimately, whereas US troops in the country are effectively occupiers.

The Tavistock Institute in London is doing some fairly serious work in the field of social engineering and manipulation. Its main activities are carried out under the ruse of supporting self-organisation and human relationships. Thus, the Tavistock Institute began developing the sociotechnical systems theory in the 1950s, started putting it into practice in the 1980s, and is still using it now. The proliferation of perverts around the world under the smokescreen of tolerance is largely due to this organisation (an agenda being carried out under the politically neutral guise of " Group Relations ").

It can be seen from these examples that the locale for protest headquarters and for the systematic destruction of the foundations of national identity is the same – the West, chiefly America.

Along with attempts to maintain tactical flexibility during protests, one can often see adjustments being made in response to the circumstances. Thus, the slogan "Flowers are better than bullets" on the placards of Belarusian opposition groups is just a reworking of the slogan "Food not Bombs" used in the decentralised anti-war campaign that originated in the US in the 1980s before spreading to Europe. A branch of this movement appeared in Belarus in 2005 with the help of local anarchists. A feature of the movement is the distribution of vegetarian food to the poor and the homeless. Depending on who is behind the campaign, local political nuances are superimposed in a number of countries.

Bernard-Henri Levy with former Belarus' presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya

Many protest movements rely on creativity. So, on 14 April 2020, Polish feminists blocked the traffic on one of Warsaw's main streets. Although the police issued large fines (upwards of €6,000) to many of the activists, no one is going to pay them, and the blocking of traffic was explained by the guidelines of the authorities themselves to observe social distancing of two metres due to the pandemic. In the end, and with the help of lawyers, the draft bills were passed to parliament, and a special commission has been appointed to review them. Thus, the feminists killed two birds with one stone: they managed to troll the government's quarantine measures and also hold a protest that drew more attention to their activities (which are directed against conservatives, including for the legalisation of abortion and the support of sexual minorities).

One should also not forget the activities of individuals aimed at the destabilisation of various governments. Usually, they do it out of ideological beliefs, often using their own money and working with international contacts. One such individual is the French neoliberal philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy, who actively supported coups in Yugoslavia and Ukraine, terrorists in Libya and Syria, and is currently helping Belarus opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, who lost in the country's recent presidential election.

George Soros and his son Alexander Soros

George Soros's son, Alexander Soros , is diligently carrying on his father's work by serving as deputy chair of the Open Society Foundations. Recently, he has been making frequent visits to the Balkans, where he has been seen in the company of many senior politicians. In addition to Europe, Alexander Soros often visits Myanmar and is involved in projects in several African countries.

The activities of these people and organisations represent a multi-level international network with multiple dimensions of communication and hidden strategies prepared with an eye to the future.

Therefore, to establish an adequate response mechanism to current and future challenges, the activities of these groups, individuals and institutions must be monitored at the systemic level – constantly, thoroughly and comprehensively.

Reposts are welcomed with the reference to ORIENTAL REVIEW.
Leonid SAVIN

Geopolitical analyst, Chief editor of Geopolitica.ru, founder and chief editor of Journal of Eurasian Affairs; head of the administration of International Eurasian Movement.

[Sep 24, 2020] Washington using Navalny situation as excuse to block Russian-German Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, Russian intelligence chief says by Jonny Tickle

Notable quotes:
"... Discussion about ending Nord Stream 2 resumed last month, when EU politicians debated further sanctions, following the suspected poisoning of Navalny. Naryshkin believes that the US is using the accusations of poisoning as a pretext to sell more LNG to Europe. On Thursday, MEPs demanded that Germany cancel construction of the pipeline. ..."
Sep 22, 2020 | www.rt.com

The US is working hard to keep the spotlight on the case of Alexey Navalny as a way to help block construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, according to Sergey Naryshkin, head of Russia's Foreign Intelligence Service (the SVR).

Naryshkin believes that Washington wants to block Nord Stream 2 so it can prevent Moscow from efficiently providing gas to the continent, thereby increasing demand for American liquefied natural gas (LNG) in other European states. As things stand, Russia delivers a large percentage of the continent's gas, and the pipeline would connect the country's gas supply directly to Germany, under the Baltic Sea. The project is more than 90 percent complete.

READ MORE: German FM links Nord Stream 2 to Navalny, threatens sanctions as Moscow accuses Berlin of dragging feet on alleged poisoning probe

"It is extremely important for Washington to end this project," Naryshkin said, explaining that the alleged poisoning of opposition figure Navalny has become an excuse to stop Nord Stream 2's construction.

The United States has long been opposed to the project, somewhat incredibly claiming that it would "undermine Europe's overall energy security and stability," but many believe that Washington's true motivations are economic.

Discussion about ending Nord Stream 2 resumed last month, when EU politicians debated further sanctions, following the suspected poisoning of Navalny. Naryshkin believes that the US is using the accusations of poisoning as a pretext to sell more LNG to Europe. On Thursday, MEPs demanded that Germany cancel construction of the pipeline.

Despite US pressure, Naryshkin has expressed hope that the EU will rely on common sense before the "cold winter" and likened the proposed halting of Nord Stream 2 to "cutting off the nose to spite the face."

Late last month, Russian anti-corruption activist Navalny was hospitalized in the Siberian city of Omsk after he became ill on a flight from Tomsk to Moscow. Two days later, after a request from his family and associates, he was flown to Berlin for treatment at that city's Charité clinic. Following tests, German authorities announced that Navalny was poisoned with a substance from the Novichok group of nerve agents. After the diagnosis, Heiko Maas, the German Foreign Minister, told Berlin tabloid Bild that he hopes "the Russians don't force [the Germans] to change [their] stance on Nord Stream 2."

US aims for gas domination in Europe, Ukrainian MP says. Nord Stream 2 is 1st target, then existing European pipeline system

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[Sep 23, 2020] Mattis Told Intel Chief They May 'Have to Take Collective Action' Against 'Unfit' Trump -- Woodward

Notable quotes:
"... Former defense secretary Jim Mattis appears to have been plotting a coup with then-Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats after growing furious with President Trump for banning transgenders from the military and moving to pull out of Afghanistan and Syria. ..."
"... Mattis quietly went to Washington National Cathedral [in May 2019] to pray about his concern for the nation's fate under Trump's command and, according to Woodward, told Coats, "There may come a time when we have to take collective action" since Trump is "dangerous. He's unfit." ..."
"... Translation: we may have to stage a coup to get him out of power. Plenty of Democrats and former and current intelligence officials are working on a Color Revolution come November as we speak . ..."
Sep 10, 2020 | www.blacklistednews.com

SOURCE: CHRIS MENAHAN, INFORMATION LIBERATION

Former defense secretary Jim Mattis appears to have been plotting a coup with then-Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats after growing furious with President Trump for banning transgenders from the military and moving to pull out of Afghanistan and Syria.

From The Washington Post :

Mattis quietly went to Washington National Cathedral [in May 2019] to pray about his concern for the nation's fate under Trump's command and, according to Woodward, told Coats, "There may come a time when we have to take collective action" since Trump is "dangerous. He's unfit."

Translation: we may have to stage a coup to get him out of power. Plenty of Democrats and former and current intelligence officials are working on a Color Revolution come November as we speak .

In a separate conversation recounted by Woodward, Mattis told Coats, "The president has no moral compass," to which the director of national intelligence replied: "True. To him, a lie is not a lie. It's just what he thinks. He doesn't know the difference between the truth and a lie."

Mattis doesn't know the difference between a male and a female. Trump reportedly accurately said his generals were a "bunch of pussies."

"Not to mention my f**king generals are a bunch of pussies. They care more about their alliances than they do about trade deals," Trump told White House trade adviser Peter Navarro at one point, according to Woodward.

No lie detected!

Ann Coulter, who has repeatedly tried to tell Trump today's generals have nothing in common with those of the past like Trump-favorite Gen. George Patton, responded to the news on Wednesday by saying Trump has won her back!

And he wins me back! https://t.co/7nhtSuC4k9

-- Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) September 10, 2020

[Sep 23, 2020] MH17 looks like a flashback to KAL007 to me, the evil is always Russian and every where!

Sep 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Wolle , Aug 8 2020 1:20 utc | 32

MH17 looks like a flashback to KAL007 to me, the evil is always Russian and every where! KAL007 was shot down by Russians, after some thousand kilometres in high sensitive Russian air space partially shadowed by RC-135 spy plane. Extremely devilish!

MH17 was IMHO shot down by drunken Ukraine forces: https://youtu.be/Q3MomxNHnUA (video from July 16th, 2014)

Of course there are NO operational BUK systems and NO fascists in the ATO zone in east Ukraine! And a SU-24 can't fly higher then 6km! Believe me, it's in Wikipedia!

[Sep 23, 2020] How fake media actually works: reporter are given the narrative and they should rehash their stories to fit it

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... The blogger Caitlin Johnstone accurately states that these most of these mainstream corporate journalists are really *narrative managers* in that their primary role is to peddle the official narrative of the US corporate/political establishment for any given topic. ..."
"... I would add that the managing editors of these "journalists"/narrative managers would be more honestly described as "handlers," to use the parlance of spooks. ..."
"... Waste of time. They control the media. The Internet may have lots of influence, but it still does not set "consensus reality" - that remains with the MSM. The MSM issues one coordinated narrative. The Internet is all over the place. Without one coordinated narrative, you can't set "reality". ..."
"... In addition, those who issue the narrative and control the MSM have the power. People want to believe those in power, due to cognitive dissonance - otherwise they'd have to accept that everyone ruling their lives is a corrupt liar. The electorate may *say* they understand that their rulers are corrupt - but they can't act* on that realization without compromising their own internal belief systems. So again, waste of time to try ..."
Sep 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

snake , Sep 22 2020 0:59 utc | 22 can we not invent a method that can counter this tactic of using propaganda to control the narrative?

1) Hack them. Release their planning documents, emails, phone calls, etc. showing how the scam was set up.

2) Waste of time. They control the media. The Internet may have lots of influence, but it still does not set "consensus reality" - that remains with the MSM. The MSM issues one coordinated narrative. The Internet is all over the place. Without one coordinated narrative, you can't set "reality".

3) In addition, those who issue the narrative and control the MSM have the power. People want to believe those in power, due to cognitive dissonance - otherwise they'd have to accept that everyone ruling their lives is a corrupt liar. The electorate may *say* they understand that their rulers are corrupt - but they can't act* on that realization without compromising their own internal belief systems. So again, waste of time to try.

snake , Sep 22 2020 10:19 utc | 36

time2wakeupnow , Sep 21 2020 23:36 utc | 20

Well....as always, and especially if it involves anything even remotely relating to 'Russia', or Iran, or whatever adversarial operational target of the day might be -- one can reliably count on our very own "Izvestia on the Hudson" to faithfully execute their officially sanctioned nation security state propaganda mission by dutifully steno-graphing as much dis/mis-information as their NSA/CIA/Pentagon handlers request (require) from them.

Petri Krohn , Sep 21 2020 22:50 utc | 18

A former editor and correspondent of the The New York Times , Michael Cieply describes how the newspaper works:
Stunned By Trump, The New York Times Finds Time For Some Soul-Searching

It was a shock on arriving at the New York Times in 2004, as the paper's movie editor, to realize that its editorial dynamic was essentially the reverse. By and large, talented reporters scrambled to match stories with what internally was often called "the narrative." We were occasionally asked to map a narrative for our various beats a year in advance, square the plan with editors, then generate stories that fit the pre-designated line.

Reality usually had a way of intervening. But I knew one senior reporter who would play solitaire on his computer in the mornings, waiting for his editors to come through with marching orders. Once, in the Los Angeles bureau, I listened to a visiting National staff reporter tell a contact, more or less: "My editor needs someone to say such-and-such, could you say that?"

The bigger shock came on being told, at least twice, by Times editors who were describing the paper's daily Page One meeting: "We set the agenda for the country in that room.

ak74 , Sep 22 2020 0:14 utc | 22
The blogger Caitlin Johnstone accurately states that these most of these mainstream corporate journalists are really *narrative managers* in that their primary role is to peddle the official narrative of the US corporate/political establishment for any given topic.

I would add that the managing editors of these "journalists"/narrative managers would be more honestly described as "handlers," to use the parlance of spooks.

In fact, it would be apt to described venerable institution of journalism itself as an intelligence operation.

THE CIA AND THE MEDIA

http://www.carlbernstein.com/magazine_cia_and_media.php

Richard Steven Heck , Sep 22 2020 4:01 utc | 28

@snake | Sep 22 2020 0:59 utc | 22 can we not invent a method that can counter this tactic of using propaganda to control the narrative?

1) Hack them. Release their planning documents, emails, phone calls, etc. showing how the scam was set up.

2) Waste of time. They control the media. The Internet may have lots of influence, but it still does not set "consensus reality" - that remains with the MSM. The MSM issues one coordinated narrative. The Internet is all over the place. Without one coordinated narrative, you can't set "reality".

3) In addition, those who issue the narrative and control the MSM have the power. People want to believe those in power, due to cognitive dissonance - otherwise they'd have to accept that everyone ruling their lives is a corrupt liar. The electorate may *say* they understand that their rulers are corrupt - but they can't act* on that realization without compromising their own internal belief systems. So again, waste of time to try.

[Sep 23, 2020] Never Forget- Smoking Gun Intel Memo From 1990s Warned Of Frankenstein The CIA Created

Notable quotes:
"... knew and bluntly acknowledged ..."
"... War on The Rocks ..."
"... The U.S. State Dept.'s own numbers at the height of the war in Syria: access the full report at STATE.GOV ..."
Sep 23, 2020 | www.blacklistednews.com
SOURCE: ZEROHEDGE

As Americans pause to remember the tragic events of September 11, 2001 which saw almost 3,000 innocents killed in the worst terror attack in United States history, it might also be worth contemplating the horrific wars and foreign quagmires unleashed during the subsequent 'war on terror'.

Bush's so-called Global War on Terror targeted 'rogue states' like Saddam's Iraq, but also consistently had a focus on uprooting and destroying al-Qaeda and other armed Islamist terror organizations (this led to the falsehood that Baathist Saddam and AQ were in cahoots). But the idea that Washington from the start saw al-Qaeda and its affiliates as some kind of eternal enemy is largely a myth.

Recall that the US covertly supported the Afghan mujahideen and other international jihadists throughout the 1980's Afghan-Soviet War, the very campaign in which hardened al-Qaeda terrorists got their start. In 1999 The Guardian in a rare moment of honest mainstream journalism warned of the Frankenstein the CIA created -- among their ranks a terror mastermind named Osama bin Laden .

But it was all the way back in 1993 that a then classified intelligence memo warned that the very fighters the CIA previously trained would soon turn their weapons on the US and its allies. The 'secret' document was declassified in 2009, but has remained largely obscure in mainstream media reporting, despite being the first to contain a bombshell admission.

A terrorism analyst at the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research named Gina Bennett wrote in the 1993 memo "The Wandering Mujahidin: Armed and Dangerous," that --

"support network that funneled money, supplies, and manpower to supplement the Afghan mujahidin" in the war against the Soviets, "is now contributing experienced fighters to militant Islamic groups worldwide."

The concluding section contains the most revelatory statements, again remembering these words were written nearly a decade before the 9/11 attacks :

US support of the mujahidin during the Afghan war will not necessarily protect US interests from attack.

...Americans will become the targets of radical Muslims' wrath. Afghan war veterans, scattered throughout the world, could surprise the US with violence in unexpected locales.

There it is in black and white print: the United States government knew and bluntly acknowledged that the very militants it armed and trained to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars would eventually turn that very training and those very weapons back on the American people .

And this was not at all a "small" or insignificant group, instead as The Guardian wrote a mere two years before 9/11 :

American officials estimate that, from 1985 to 1992, 12,500 foreigners were trained in bomb-making, sabotage and urban guerrilla warfare in Afghan camps the CIA helped to set up .

But don't think for a moment that there was ever a "lesson learned" by Washington.

Instead the CIA and other US agencies repeated the 1980s policy of arming jihadists to overthrow US enemy regimes in places like Libya and Syria even long after the "lesson" of 9/11. As War on The Rocks recounted :

Despite the passage of time, the issues Ms. Bennett raised in her 1993 work continue to be relevant today. This fact is a sign of the persistence of the problem of Sunni jihadism and the "wandering mujahidin." Today, of course, the problem isn't Afghanistan but Syria. While the war there is far from over, there is already widespread nervousness, particularly in Europe, about what will happen when the foreign fighters return from that conflict.

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1304385396692914177&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.blacklistednews.com%2Farticle%2F77999%2Fnever-forget-smoking-gun-intel-memo-from-1990s-warned-of-frankenstein-the-cia.html&theme=light&widgetsVersion=219d021%3A1598982042171&width=550px

On 9/11 we should never forget the innocent lives lost, but we should also never forget the Frankenstein of jihad the CIA created .

* * *

The U.S. State Dept.'s own numbers at the height of the war in Syria: access the full report at STATE.GOV

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[Sep 22, 2020] Stephen F. Cohen -- In Memoriam by Gilbert Doctorow

Unfortunately in his brilliant analysis of USA-Russia relations Stephen Cohen never pointed out that the USA policy toward Russia is dictated by the interests of maintaining global neoliberal empire and the concept of "Full Spectrum Dominance" which was adopted by the USA neoliberal elite after the collapse of the USSR.
Like British empire the USA neoliberal empire is now overextended, metropolia is in secular stagnation with deterioration standard of living of the bottom 80% of population, so the USA under Trump became more aggressive and dangerous on the international arena. Trump administration behaves behaves like a cornered rat on international arena.
Notable quotes:
"... On Friday, 18 September, professor Steve Cohen passed away in New York City and we, the "dissident" community of Americans standing for peace with Russia – and for peace with the world at large – lost a towering intellectual and skillful defender of our cause who enjoyed an audience of millions by his weekly broadcasts on the John Batchelor Show, WABC Radio. ..."
"... from the start of the Information Wars against Russia during the George W. Bush administration following Putin's speech at the Munich Security Conference in February 2007, no voice questioning the official propaganda line in America was tolerated. Steve Cohen, who in the 1990s had been a welcome guest on U.S. national television and a widely cited expert in print media suddenly found himself blacklisted and subjected to the worst of McCarthyite style, ad hominem attacks. ..."
"... the opposition to Steve was led by experts in the Ukrainian and other minority peoples sub-categories of the profession who were militantly opposed not just to him personally but to any purely objective, not to mention sympathetic treatment of Russian leadership in the territorial expanse of Eurasia. ..."
"... Almost no one outside our 'dissident' community is concerned about the possibility of Armageddon in say two years' time due to miscalculations and bad luck in our pursuing economic, informational and military confrontation with Russia and China. ..."
"... My point in this discussion is that in the last decade of his life Stephen Cohen became one of the nation's most fearless and persistent defenders of the right to Free Speech. ..."
"... It was forced upon him by The New York Times, The Washington Post and other major media who pilloried him or blacklisted him over his unorthodox, unsanctioned, nonconformist views on the "Putin regime." It was forced upon him by university colleagues who sought to deny his right to establish graduate school fellowships in Russian affairs bearing his name and that of his mentor at Indiana University, Professor Tucker. ..."
"... In the face of vicious personal attacks from these McCarthyite forces, in the face of hate mail and even threats to his life, Steve decided to set up The American Committee and to recruit to its governing board famous, patriotic Americans and the descendants of the most revered families in the country. In this he succeeded, and it is to his credit that a moral counter force to the stampeding bulls of repression was erected and has survived to this day. ..."
Sep 22, 2020 | gilbertdoctorow.com

On Friday, 18 September, professor Steve Cohen passed away in New York City and we, the "dissident" community of Americans standing for peace with Russia – and for peace with the world at large – lost a towering intellectual and skillful defender of our cause who enjoyed an audience of millions by his weekly broadcasts on the John Batchelor Show, WABC Radio.

A year ago, I reviewed his latest book, War With Russia? which drew upon the material of those programs and took this scholar turned journalist into a new and highly accessible genre of oral readings in print. The narrative style may have been more relaxed, with simplified syntax, but the reasoning remained razor sharp. I urge those who are today paying tribute to Steve, to buy and read the book, which is his best legacy.

From start to finish, Stephen F. Cohen was among America's best historians of his generation, putting aside the specific subject matter that he treated: Nikolai Bukharin, his dissertation topic and the material of his first and best known book; or, to put it more broadly, the history of Russia (USSR) in the 20 th century. He was one of the very rare cases of an historian deeply attentive to historiography, to causality and to logic. I understood this when I read a book of his from the mid-1980s in which he explained why Russian (Soviet) history was no longer attracting young students of quality: because there were no unanswered questions, because we smugly assumed that we knew about that country all that there was to know. That was when our expert community told us with one voice that the USSR was entrapped in totalitarianism without any prospect for the overthrow of its oppressive regime.

But my recollections of Steve also have a personal dimension going back six years or so when a casual email correspondence between us flowered into a joint project that became the launch of the American Committee for East West Accord (ACEWA). This was a revival of a pro-détente association of academics and business people that existed from the mid-1970s to the early 1990s, when, following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the removal of the Communist Party from power, the future of Russia in the family of nations we call the 'international community' seemed assured and there appeared to be no further need for such an association as ACEWA.

I hasten to add that in the original ACEWA Steve and I were two ships that passed in the night. With his base in Princeton, he was a protégé of the dean of diplomats then in residence there, George Kennan, who was the leading light on the academic side of the ACEWA. I was on the business side of the association, which was led by Don Kendall, chairman of Pepsico and also for much of the 1970s chairman of the US-USSR Trade and Economic Council of which I was also a member. I published pro-détente articles in their newsletter and published a lengthy piece on cooperation with the Soviet Union in agricultural and food processing domains, my specialty at that time, in their collection of essays by leaders in the U.S. business community entitled Common Sense in U.S.-Soviet Trade .

The academic contingent had, as one might assume, a 'progressive' coloration, while the business contingent had a Nixon Republican coloration. Indeed, in the mid-1980s these two sides split in their approach to the growing peace movement in the U.S. that was fed by opposition in the 'thinking community' on university campuses to Ronald Reagan's Star Wars agenda. Kendall shut the door at ACEWA to rabble rousing and the association did not rise to the occasion, so that its disbanding in the early '90s went unnoticed.

In the re-incorporated American Committee, I helped out by assuming the formal obligations of Treasurer and Secretary, and also became the group's European Coordinator from my base in Brussels. At this point my communications with Steve were almost daily and emotionally quite intense. This was a time when America's expert community on Russian affairs once again felt certain that it knew everything there was to know about the country, and most particularly about the nefarious "Putin regime." But whereas in the 1970s and 1980s, polite debate about the USSR/Russia was entirely possible both behind closed doors and in public space, from the start of the Information Wars against Russia during the George W. Bush administration following Putin's speech at the Munich Security Conference in February 2007, no voice questioning the official propaganda line in America was tolerated. Steve Cohen, who in the 1990s had been a welcome guest on U.S. national television and a widely cited expert in print media suddenly found himself blacklisted and subjected to the worst of McCarthyite style, ad hominem attacks.

From my correspondence and several meetings with Steve at this time both in his New York apartment and here in Brussels, when he and Katrina van der Heuvel came to participate in a Round Table dedicated to relations with Russia at the Brussels Press Club that I arranged, I knew that Steve was deeply hurt by these vitriolic attacks. He was at the time waging a difficult campaign to establish a fellowship in support of graduate studies in Russian affairs. It was touch and go, because of vicious opposition from some stalwarts of the profession to any fellowship that bore Steve's name. Allow me to put the 'i' on this dispute: the opposition to Steve was led by experts in the Ukrainian and other minority peoples sub-categories of the profession who were militantly opposed not just to him personally but to any purely objective, not to mention sympathetic treatment of Russian leadership in the territorial expanse of Eurasia. In the end, Steve and Katrina prevailed. The fellowships exist and, hopefully, will provide sustenance to future studies when American attitudes towards Russia become less politicized.

At all times and on all occasions, Steve Cohen was a voice of reason above all. The problem of our age is that we are now not only living in a post-factual world, but in a post-logic world. The public reads day after day the most outrageous and illogical assertions about alleged Russian misdeeds posted by our most respected mainstream media including The New York Times and The Washington Post . Almost no one dares to raise a hand and suggest that this reporting is propaganda and that the public is being brainwashed. Steve did exactly that in War With Russia? in a brilliant and restrained text.

Regrettably today we have no peace movement to speak of. Youth and our 'progressive' elites are totally concerned over the fate of humanity in 30 or 40 years' time as a consequence of Global Warming and rising seas. That is the essence of the Green Movement. Almost no one outside our 'dissident' community is concerned about the possibility of Armageddon in say two years' time due to miscalculations and bad luck in our pursuing economic, informational and military confrontation with Russia and China.

I fear it will take only some force majeure development such as we had in 1962 during the Cuban Missile Crisis to awaken the broad public to the risks to our very survival that we are incurring by ignoring the issues that Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Princeton and New York University was bringing to the airwaves week after week on his radio program.

Postscript

In terms of action, the new ACEWA was even less effective than its predecessor, which had avoided linking up with the peace movement of the 1980s and sought to exert influence on policy through armchair talks with Senators and other statesmen in Washington behind closed doors of (essentially) men's clubs.

However, the importance of the new ACEWA, and the national importance of Stephen Cohen lay elsewhere.

This question of appraising Stephen Cohen's national importance is all the more timely given that on the day of his death, 18 September, the nation also lost Supreme Justice Ruth Ginsburg, about whose national importance no Americans, whether her fans or her opponents, had any doubt.

My point in this discussion is that in the last decade of his life Stephen Cohen became one of the nation's most fearless and persistent defenders of the right to Free Speech. It was not a role that he sought. It was thrust upon him by the expert community of international affairs, including the Council on Foreign Relations, from which he reluctantly resigned over this matter.

It was forced upon him by The New York Times, The Washington Post and other major media who pilloried him or blacklisted him over his unorthodox, unsanctioned, nonconformist views on the "Putin regime." It was forced upon him by university colleagues who sought to deny his right to establish graduate school fellowships in Russian affairs bearing his name and that of his mentor at Indiana University, Professor Tucker.

In the face of vicious personal attacks from these McCarthyite forces, in the face of hate mail and even threats to his life, Steve decided to set up The American Committee and to recruit to its governing board famous, patriotic Americans and the descendants of the most revered families in the country. In this he succeeded, and it is to his credit that a moral counter force to the stampeding bulls of repression was erected and has survived to this day.

©Gilbert Doctorow, 2020

[If you found value in this article, you should be interested to read my latest collection of essays entitled A Belgian Perspective on International Affairs, published in November 2019 and available in e-book, paperback and hardbound formats from amazon, barnes & noble, bol.com, fnac, Waterstones and other online retailers. Use the "View Inside" tab on the book's webpages to browse.]

[Sep 22, 2020] The hypocrisy of Western democracy promotion

Sep 22, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jackrabbit , Sep 20 2020 16:45 utc | 8

How the west lost

What I liked most about this article was the highlighting of impossible-to-counter narratives, the hypocrisy of Western democracy promotion (even as Western governments fellate domestic and foreign economic elites), and the denigration of nationalism from 1990-2016.

Sadly, the author does a disservice in suggesting that such manipulations are past. Instead, the Western power-elite has done what it does best: co-opt a 'winning' narrative (nationalism) and double-down.

Other deficiencies:

  1. Ignores the fact that the US Deep State, caretakers of the Empire, hasn't accepted defeat. Since 2014 they have been actively trying to reverse what they see as a major set-back (not defeat).

    Via economic sanctions, trade wars, propaganda, and military tensions the Empire is waging a hybrid war against what it calls the "revisionist" efforts of Russia and China.

  2. Plays into the propaganda narrative of Trump as populist.
  3. Fails to see the 1990's 'economic shock therapy' as a deliberate attempt to push Russia into total capitulation. This, darker view, was confirmed obliquely by Kissinger in his interview with ft in which he stated that no one could foresee the ability of Russia to absorb pain.
!!

[Sep 22, 2020] The New US-Russian Cold War -- Who is to Blame

It was all about Full Spectrum Domination. McFaul is not intellectual, he is a propagandist. Actually mediocre, obnoxious propagandist. In like Professor Cohen, intellectually he is nothing with academic credentials.
The level and primitivism lies about Ukraine would name any serious academic flash. It was about encircling Russia.
McFaul was behind Magnitsky which in best conspiracy tradition raises questions whether he works for MI6? We now know who Browder was and suspicious that he was Magnitsky killer or facilitator/financer (by hiring the jail doctor who traded Magnitsky) are very strong in view of "cui bono" question.
Notable quotes:
"... He is definitely not at the same level as Stephen F.Cohen. This is very alarming for the US, that people like him could have any power decision on Foreign Policy, and could explain the slow decline of the USA. ..."
"... McFaul is intellectually incoherent and disingenuous. Cohen wasted him ..."
"... We all know the truth... US economy heavily dependent on producing weapons and ammunition ..."
"... Mc Faul is clearly not supposed to have been in the positions of power, where he was. Something is fundamentally wrong with America. I think there is a crisis of personnel. Where are all these incredibly smart, high IQ people Harvard, Princeton, and the Ivy Leagues are supposedly pumping out? ..."
Sep 22, 2020 | www.youtube.com

TheInstallations , 2 years ago

McFaul is definitely not an academic, but much more a mediocre high civil servant. He is also very post modern in his approach. He is here to sell his book, not to argue ideas. He is incapable of building a rhetorical argument, and of having any political vision or strong analytical intelligence.

He is definitely not at the same level as Stephen F.Cohen. This is very alarming for the US, that people like him could have any power decision on Foreign Policy, and could explain the slow decline of the USA.

Confronted to people like Putin who is obviously an Old fashion politician like de Gaulles or Churchill, the Cold War can only lead us to catastrophe.

Yevgeny Goncharov , 2 years ago

Great facts from Prof. Cohen. Faulty logic from McFaul ("you cannot use those variables..."). McFaul will not get far in understanding Russia with this twisted approach, ie pretending like nothing (NATO, missile treaty, regime changes) happens.

The Maverick Historian , 2 years ago

Very informative debate! I think McFaul has only contributed to the new cold war with the treaties he helped write and the ill-informed advice he provided to the neoconservative Obama administration. Mr. Stephen Cohen is brilliant and I only wish he was more influential in shaping today's foreign policy. Though thankfully, McFaul is also no longer influential in shaping U.S. foreign policy.

Yevgeny Goncharov , 2 years ago

Very low from McFaul. Bringing personal attacks on him from social media as "facts" and "arguments" ("McFaul is a pedophile") . This not a level of academic argument from McFaul. He is no match to Cohen.

Aleksandar Mali , 1 year ago

It's so easy to understand! Russia is doing same thing usa will do when china starts to open military bases in latin America. Its not hard to imagine and in decade or to you will not have to imagine you will have that reality. Many Latin America countries will be interconnected with china with economic and military agreements than one day they will try to brig Mexico in China's sphere of influence if they refuse china can let's say "help" opposition to come in power and sign everything China wants.

I would like to see what American "experts" will say. How many of them will think that Mexico as a sovereign natio have right to sign any agreement it wants maybe even Russia can open military base and bring nuclear weapons to border of USA. So what it's their democratic right, isn't it?

Peace and Love , 2 years ago

McFaul is intellectually incoherent and disingenuous. Cohen wasted him

Salam Ahmed , 10 months ago

1:13:33 - 1:13:58 I swear by the all-powerful Albert Einistine that you are lying AND YOU KNOW IT. Russians said A BILLION times that U.S.A slowly but SURELY preparing for what they called "a calamitous war" by moving its lethal weapons nearer and nearer to the Russian territories.

We all know the truth... US economy heavily dependent on producing weapons and ammunition but the very very very main reason [for harassing Russia and the rest of world] is because the Rothschild family wants GLOBAL DOMINATION. SOLD FACT (ask ANY Russian intelligence officer about it and you will see what i mean).

SvendBosanvovski , 1 year ago (edited)

I have read Professor Cohen's last two works ("Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives" and "War with Russia?") and found them very informative and persuasive, but seeing him here expanding upon his key arguments is even more rewarding.

He shouldn't have to be brave to hold to his position, given his reputation as a scholar, but regrettably he is made to appear out of step with the critical mass of opinion makers who see more value promoting conflict with Russia than working towards a sensible accommodation.

rd264 , 2 years ago

I'm not an "expert" from Stanford, but as I recall the USSR imploded and the US [CIA etc] was totally surprised -so called pundits and experts in the US did not see it coming, then the next thing we get is US mainstream media claimed victory in the cold war, just blanket assertions that US won the cold war because the US is virtuous and clean and good, and we did it by the clear superiority of US way of life or some such crap.

Charles Krauthammer, for example. Now so called media and historians try to convince us that Reagan lead disarmament, but as I recall he blocked it at most points, for example, it was Gorbachev not Reagan who was out front and did all the leading at Reykjavik, and Reagan threw away Gorbachev's historic offer to totally disarm on the grounds that Star Wars was a more important priority, on Richard Perle's advice.

Now we are seeing something similar under Trump in which the US is again uninterested in peace and far more interested in wars by proxies and drones and global hegemony and control running the 7 seas and space to boot.

Dmitriy A , 1 year ago

Michael Foley is a liar of course US was involved I was me in US Army force and my friends used to travel to Georgia way before 2008 and of course everybody knows 2008 Russia and Georgia went to war with each other but our soldiers US government soldiers were teaching Georgians fighting with the NATO forces and all orange resolutions and Geo like him involved in Overturning government was famous Victoria Nuland

a 19 , 9 months ago

Mcfaul should have stayed in Montana

Larry Galearis , 2 years ago

Interesting debate and I hope Cohen is right, and is not the first of its kind. But still the FIRST EVER free debate about the New Cold War in the United States is (so far) still on Youtube. While listening to the two professors I found myself noting the difference in the presentation of facts from a career oriented politician/academic who is influenced by a forced narrative (McFaul) and one (Cohen) who is an academic historian who is in dissent and can speak freely (he is retired).

Keep in mind that Prof. McFaul has a career to worry about. It shows a LOT! Here we can see how political pressure can influence a debate. McFaul is still quite deserving of accolades for his courage to even say what he did in this debate.

And note how much free speech is missing in American society in the fact that this sort of thing is very difficult to achieve in a collapsed democracy. Note also that McFaul also stuck to "the Narrative" big lies like the so-called Crimea "annexation" when he would have known the truth of it....There are other examples. Americans are denied the fact that the public vote taken in Crimea was over 90% IN FAVOUR of joining Russia (again). This fact is simply too large for McFaul to be unaware of and yet most Americans are wallowing in this fake news. Or censored omissions. FWIW, Galearis

blackjackpinoko , 1 year ago

McFaul sounded like Pompeo

Steven Bishop , 2 months ago

The Monroe Doctrine. Has McFly read it?

Davide Sinigoi , 1 year ago

Prof. McFaul is a partisan. He bases his opinion of detailed facts, so detailed that he misses the bigger picture. The bigger picture is that he claims to be a sovereigns, but only when it comes to the US sovereignty. How about Russia's sovereignty?

Or Ukraine's whose government has been toppled by a (among others) US sponsored coup? How about Syria sovereignty? He furthers the view that the US had a fair posture towards Russia, which is not. This is also demonstrated by his personal deep dislike of Putin, which is something that both a real statesman or a real scholar should not influence opinions and actions.

McFaul's perspective is also flawed by the conflation of his (and Obama's) wishes and reality: that is that they don't like Putin and think to deal with Russia as if Putin was not there, but he is. You deal with the reality, not with your wishes. Putin is legitimate and strong Russia's president, whether McFaul likes him or not. A real respect for sovereignty demands respect for the head of the state you deal with. You don't question his legitimacy, as well as they don't questioned Clinton's, Bush's, Obama or Trump legitimacy. His point of view is that everything goes on in the world should have the US sanction, otherwise is not good.

This is imperial hubris, this is arrogance. This flaws his opinion in so far everything is measured upon american likes and dislikes. THis is not statesmanship, this is not scholarship, this is partisanship. He is also intellectually dishonest because he confuses a debate on right and wrong, which should be based on certain assumptions, with a debate on party interests, which has nothing to do with right and wrong, and is based on different assumptions. Indeed he is the less fit person in a debate on responsibility for the New Cold War because he was involved in its development and acquisition.

Partisanship is admitted, but shouldn't be disguised as neutrality or given any relevance just because of knowledge of technical details he knows - much of them are, frankly, irrelevant. His points are weak and inconsistent with geopolitical and a realist view of the international relations, they are biased by universal-liberal ideology, they are US-centric, he forgets too many essential points about the whole story. For instance he talks about the missed chance for Russian democracy (here a debate about what democracy is: his assumption is that the US democracy is .... please, don't make me laugh), but he doesn't mention that Soviet people voted in referenda and overwhelmingly wanted the USSR to keep on existing, but he forgets this "detail".

He forgets how the so much beloved Elcin sent the tanks against the parliament, many people were killed, how he allowed the pillaging of Russian people and resources by criminal oligarchs (many of them happily hosted by the UK and presented as political dissidents), and how the Russian 1996 were HEAVILY rigged and meddled by the US in order to reconfirm Elcin as a president. He complains about Putin being appointed by Elcin out of nothing. Well I can't recall any American complaints at that time, maybe because they thought he could be an alcoholic puppet like Elcin and that was clearly something the US liked and supported. So what about Obama (fake) words about wishing a strong Russia?

Obama spoke derogatory words about Russia. The only American interests about Russia is that is a militarily and strategically weak provider of cheap natural resources and that is not in tne position of competing for anything. I will stop here, although I could write pages and pages about McFlaws .... ooops! McFaul's inconsistency both as a scholar and even more as a statesman's advisor, but the debate was among a great intellectual with a clear vision of the world, and a small professor taken with insignificant details and too much love for Obama and blind believe in liberal universal ideology.

Alex P. , 9 months ago

Mc Faul is clearly not supposed to have been in the positions of power, where he was. Something is fundamentally wrong with America. I think there is a crisis of personnel. Where are all these incredibly smart, high IQ people Harvard, Princeton, and the Ivy Leagues are supposedly pumping out?

Bob Trajkoski , 1 year ago

McFaul believes in his own propaganda, irrational person and dangerous at that

Adam Rihak , 3 months ago

Prof. Cohen astonishing realpolitik ingenuity when asked "what the security interests of Ukraine and Georgia are" ( 1:16:21 ) unveils to me his understanding of politics as kind of imperialistic chess game where the US stands against the USSR (or RF for that matter). I have experienced the same feelings from his other debates (I remember one memorable at Munk Debates in 2015) - as if the historic fears, desires and dreams (of NATO or EU membership as the only effective shield against Russian military power) of so many ex-soviet countries means absolutely nothing - as if they were mere puppets of US "regime". As though the legitimate wishes of these sovereign countries means nothing at all. He is so surprised by that question he suddenly can't retrieve even the definition of what security interests of a country actually means - a rather strange quality in a historian. Ultimately he comes up with "they should make peace with their neighbors" - say this to countries that were along their history subjects of Soviet violent repression, military invasions, ethnic genocides and such. "I don't think Russian is a threat to them". Absolutely ridiculous.


Jean-Pierre Delorraine
, 8 months ago (edited)

This Michael McFaul individual is such severe laughing-stock completely out of touch with reality. Stephen Cohen's version of the "new cold war" is much closer to reality and we should not forget the nefarious entities that pull the strings in D.C. U.S. covert involvement throughout eastern Europe and especially the Ukraine is more than evident. Putin and Russia in general is not stupid and see right through U.S. covert meddling on Russia's border. And those "peaceful demonstrators" in Syria that MacFaul dearly praises are mere agents of the CIA/Mossad complex. Where are they now?


Nikhilesh Surve
, 4 months ago

Monroe doctrine doesn't care about the democratic rights of countries in the western hemisphere to enter into any alliance or partnership with USA's rival. Also, there's still no evidence of Russian hacking which is basis of their religion of RUSSIA RUSSIA RUSSIA !

Pink Question , 3 months ago

Sure, since in Ukraine you guys didn't push money in mysterious organisations that would support the "democratic" narrative. I don't like NATO in my country and I see nato presence as an existential threat for Russia! Look back at the Cuba crisis it's exactly the SAME! You no good morally and ethically corrupt poor excuses of mouth pieces

Ser Korz , 2 years ago

Interesting how USA wants democracy for (all) others , but USA wants capitalist aristocracy for it self ( Jimmy Carter Tells Oprah America Is No Longer a Democracy, Now an Oligarchy https://mic.com/articles/125813/jimmy-carter-tells-oprah-america-is-no-longer-a-democracy-now-an-oligarchy#.AFxvdOCIa ).


Preben Soe
, 9 months ago

Either that Faul person is delusional or he is outright lying - Did Turkey not get threatened with sanctions when they decided to trade with Russia on anti missile weapons.

Eamonn Wright555 , 1 year ago

You know Obama is a straight faced liar . Furthermore , we genocided innocent Christians and Muslims in three countries and created a diaspora of migrants to Europe. So , we are supposed to believe that all those PhDs did not foresee that , most people think that it was your intentional outcome all along . So it goes now in Venezuela. Mcfaul is one of many who just carry the water and carry out orders . It's almost as if , the powers that be want the USA to fall . Because they can not be this stupid .

Paul Srochenski , 1 year ago

Call Cohen tells the truth the other guy just lying a United States started that whole thing in Syria they backed up Isis they backed up all the terrorists and because they want to split the country up and give Israel that major part of it cuz they want the natural resources the oil out of there and everything else because that's what they do everywhere they go they want a natural Resorts and they don't care how many people they kill

Eamonn Wright555 , 1 year ago

You know Obama is a straight faced liar . Furthermore , we genocided innocent Christians and Muslims in three countries and created a diaspora of migrants to Europe. So , we are supposed to believe that all those PhDs did not foresee that , most people think that it was your intentional outcome all along . So it goes now in Venezuela. Mcfaul is one of many who just carry the water and carry out orders . It's almost as if , the powers that be want the USA to fall . Because they can not be this stupid .

Davide Sinigoi , 1 year ago

Prof. McFaul is a partisan. He bases his opinion of detailed facts, so detailed that he misses the bigger picture. The bigger picture is that he claims to be a sovereignist, but only when it comes to the US sovereignty. How about Russia's sovereignity? Or Ukraine's whose government has been toppled by a (among others) US sponsored coup? How about Syria sovereignty? He furthers the view that the US had a fair posture towards Russia, which is not. This is also demonstrated by his personal deep dislike of Putin, which is something that both a real statesman or a real scholar should not influence opinions and actions. McFaul's perspective is also flawed by the conflation of his (and Obama's) wishes and reality: that is that they donì't like Putin and think to deal with Russia as if Putin was not there, but he is. You deal with the reality, not with your wishes. Putin is legitimate and strong Russia's president, whether McFaul likes him or not. A real respect for sovereignty demands respect for the head of the state you deal with. You don't question his legitimacy, as well as they don't questioned Clinton's, Bush's, Obama or Trump legitimacy. His point of view is that everything goes on in the world should have the US sanction, otherwise is not good. This is imperial hubris, this is arrogance. This flaws his opinion in so far everything is measured upon american likes and dislikes. THis is not statesmanship, this is not scholarship, this is partisanship. He is also intellectually dishonest because he confuses a debate on right and wrong, which should be based on certain assumptions, with a debate on party interests, which has nothing to do with right and wrong, and is based on different assumptions. Indeed he is the less fit person in a debate on responsibility for the New Cold War because he was involved in its development and acutisation. Partisanship is admitted, but shouldn't be disguised as neutrality or given any relevance just because of knowledge of technical details he knows - much of them are, frankly, irrelevant. His points are weak and inconsistent with geopolitical and a realist view of the international relations, they are biased by universal-liberal ideology, they are US-centric, he forgets too many essential points about the whole story. For instance he talks about the missed chance for Russian democracy (here a debate about what democracy is: his assumption is that the US democracy is .... please, don't make me laugh), but he doesn't mention that Soviet people voted in referenda and overwhelmingly wanted the USSR to keep on existing, but he forgets this "detail". He forgets how the so much beloved Elcin sent the tanks against the parliament, many people were killed, how he allowed the pillaging of Russian people and resources by criminal oligarchs (many of them happily hosted by the UK and presented as political dissidents), and how the Russian 1996 were HEAVILY rigged and meddled by the US in order to reconfirm Elcin as a president. He complains about Putin being appointed by Elcin out of nothing. Well I can't recall any American complaints at that time, maybe because they thought he could be an alcoholic puppet like Elcin and that was clearly something the US liked and supported. So what about Obama (fake) words about wishing a strong Russia? Obama spoke derogatory words about Russia. The only American interests about Russia is that is a militarly and strategically weak provider of cheap natural resources and that is not in tne position of competing for anything. I will stop here, although I could write pages and pages about McFlaws .... ooops! McFaul's inconsistency both as a scholar and even more as a statesman's advisor, but the debate was among a great intellectual with a clear vision of the world, and a small professor taken with insignificant details and too much love for Obama and blind believe in liberal universal ideology.

Alex P. , 9 months ago

Mc Faul is clearly not supposed to have been in the positions of power, where he was. Something is fundamentally wrong with America. I think there is a crisis of personnel. Where are all these incredibly smart, high IQ people Harvard, Princeton, and the Ivy Leagues are supposedly pumping out?

Rufus Leaking , 1 week ago

I won't, for a second, try to justify the expansion of N.A.T.O. up to the borders of Russia. But I simply cannot get past the belief that the N.A.T.O. expansion was fueled by a (not implausible) fear that a non-Soviet Russia would eventually try to surround its borders with Moscow-friendly governments, just as Stalin did before, during, and after WWII. Russia has been invaded from the west so many times that the lingering fear of it is almost in the Russian people's genetic code. What the rest of the world sees as Soviet & post-Soviet Russian paranoia and expansionism could plausibly be seen by the Russians as a prudent precaution against further western aggression. I don't AGREE with this, but I can imagine how the Russian psyche might be so inclined. I don't agree with the N.A.T.O. expansion, but I can also see how western paranoia about Russian expansionism would fuel the resulting western "encroachment". Ask people in Latvia, Lithuania & Estonia (and, for that matter, Finland) who were alive in WWII if their fear of Russian expansion is based in reality, or is merely paranoia. Be prepared for "VERY STRONG" answers.

Virgocygni56 , 9 months ago

What is the date of this debate Anyone can suggest?

Bob Trajkoski , 1 year ago

McFaul believes in his own propaganda, irrational person and dangerous at that

Alyson Mc Vitty , 1 year ago

2nd speaker - mcfaul - is and idiot sort of manic.

Jsmes Oercy , 1 year ago

Wow the second guy is such a schmuck ,,z,,trying to be funny and failing

Charles DuBois , 6 months ago

Why does 'our' US/Euro left leave me a pronounced impression that they have some special axe grinding on Russia? Is my take on this wrong? And try as I may to ignore it, my gut reaction to our younger author is highly unfavorable. I shall re-watch tomorrow hoping to listen more obectively.

James Registe , 4 months ago

Who ELSE is to blame, Russia has been making overtures since Kruschev

popiedo , 1 year ago

Mcfaul just rambles and tries to crack jokes.

Colonel Chuck , 1 year ago

McFaul sure runs his mouth about nothing.

Adam Rihak , 3 months ago

Prof. Cohen astonishing realpolitik ingenuity when asked "what the security interests of Ukraine and Georgia are" ( 1:16:21 ) unveils to me his understanding of politics as kind of imperialistic chess game where the US stands against the USSR (or RF for that matter). I have experienced the same feelings from his other debates (I remember one memorable at Munk Debates in 2015) - as if the historic fears, desires and dreams (of NATO or EU membership as the only effective shield against Russian military power) of so many ex-soviet countries means absolutely nothing - as if they were mere puppets of US "regime". As though the legitimate wishes of these sovereign countries means nothing at all. He is so surprised by that question he suddenly can't retrieve even the definition of what security interests of a country actually means - a rather strange quality in a historian. Ultimately he comes up with "they should make peace with their neighbors" - say this to countries that were along their history subjects of Soviet violent repression, military invasions, ethnic genocides and such. "I don't think Russian is a threat to them". Absolutely ridiculous.

Jean-Pierre Delorraine , 8 months ago (edited)

This Michael McFaul individual is such severe laughing-stock completely out of touch with reality. Stephen Cohen's version of the "new cold war" is much closer to reality and we should not forget the nefarious entities that pull the strings in D.C. U.S. covert involvement throughout eastern Europe and especially the Ukraine is more than evident. Putin and Russia in general is not stupid and see right through U.S. covert meddling on Russia's border. And those "peaceful demonstrators" in Syria that MacFaul dearly praises are mere agents of the CIA/Mossad complex. Where are they now?

varro We , 2 years ago (edited)

I think it's fair to say that the US won the cold war, the eastern block was broke, there soviet union was a nightmare for humanity, the west was seen as a bright light and it was. So let's put aside propaganda, ask anyone from the eastern block and they will tell you that what Russia created was a genocide. Just look how fast all of those counties jumped to enter NATO. Soviet union collapsed. It's a very nice discussion and I learn a lot from this, there are a lot of things that US and Russia could have done to prevent another cold war, I think what we are with is with a belief in human wisdom, if there is any left.

[Sep 21, 2020] How the west lost by Anatol Lieven

Highly recommended!
A very good article. A better title would be "How neoliberalism collapsed" Any religious doctrine sonner or later collased under the weight of corruption of its prisets and unrealistic assumptions about the society. Neoliberalism in no expection as in heart it is secular religion based on deification of markets.
He does not discuss the role of Harvard Mafiosi in destruction of Russian (and other xUSSR republics) economy in 1990th, mass looting, empowerment of people (with pensioners experiencing WWII level of starvation) and creation of mafia capitalism on post Soviet state. But the point he made about the process are right. Yeltsin mafia, like Yeltsin himself, were the product of USA and GB machinations
Notable quotes:
"... If the US (and the UK, if as usual we tag along) approach the relationship with Beijing with anything like the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War, then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world. ..."
"... One of the most malign effects of western victory in 1989-91 was to drown out or marginalise criticism of what was already a deeply flawed western social and economic model. In the competition with the USSR, it was above all the visible superiority of the western model that eventually destroyed Soviet communism from within. ..."
"... These beliefs interacted to produce a dominant atmosphere of "there is no alternative," which made it impossible and often in effect forbidden to conduct a proper public debate on the merits of the big western presumptions, policies or plans of the era ..."
"... This was a sentiment I encountered again and again (if not often so frankly expressed) in western establishment institutions in that era: in economic journals if it was suggested that rapid privatisation in the former USSR would lead to massive corruption, social resentment and political reaction; in security circles, if anyone dared to question the logic of Nato expansion ..."
"... Accompanying this overwhelmingly dominant political and economic ideology was an American geopolitical vision equally grandiose in ambition and equally blind to the lessons of history. This was summed up in the memorandum on "Defence Planning Guidance 1994-1999," drawn up in April 1992 for the Bush Senior administration by Under-Secretary of Defence Paul Wolfowitz and Lewis "Scooter" Libby, and subsequently leaked to the media ..."
"... By claiming for the US the right of unilateral intervention anywhere in the world and denying other major powers a greater role in their regions, this strategy essentially extended the Monroe Doctrine (which effectively defined the "western hemisphere" as the US sphere of influence) to the entire planet: an ambition greater than that of any previous power. The British Empire at its height knew that it could never intervene unilaterally on the continent of Europe or in Central America. The most megalomaniac of European rulers understood that other great powers with influence in their own areas of the world would always exist. ..."
"... "A stable and healthy polity and economy must be based on some minimal moral values" ..."
"... Many liberals gave the impression of complete indifference to the resulting immiseration of the Russian population in these years. At a meeting of the Carnegie Endowment in Washington that I attended later, former Prime Minister Yegor Gaidar boasted to an applauding US audience of how he had destroyed the Russian military industrial complex. The fact that this also destroyed the livelihoods of tens of millions of Russians and Ukrainians was not mentioned. ..."
"... This attitude was fed by contempt on the part of the educated classes of Moscow and St Petersburg for ordinary Russians, who were dubbed Homo Sovieticus and treated as an inferior species whose loathsome culture was preventing the liberal elites from taking their rightful place among the "civilised" nations of the west. This frame of mind was reminiscent of the traditional attitude of white elites in Latin America towards the Indio and Mestizo majorities in their countries. ..."
"... I vividly remember one Russian liberal journalist state his desire to fire machine guns into crowds of elderly Russians who joined Communist demonstrations to protest about the collapse of their pensions. The response of the western journalists present was that this was perhaps a little bit excessive, but to be excused since the basic sentiment was correct. ..."
"... If the post-Cold War world order was a form of US imperialism, it now looks like an empire in which rot in the over-extended periphery has spread to the core. The economic and social patterns of 1990s Russia and Ukraine have come back to haunt the west, though so far thank God in milder form. The massive looting of Russian state property and the systematic evasion of taxes by Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs was only possible with the help of western banks, which transferred the proceeds to the west and the Caribbean. This crime was euphemised in the western discourse (naturally including the Economist ) as "capital flight." ..."
"... The indifference of Russian elites to the suffering of the Russian population has found a milder echo in the neglect of former industrial regions across Britain, Western Europe and the US that did so much to produce the votes for Brexit, for Trump and for populist nationalist parties in Europe. The catastrophic plunge in Russian male life expectancy in the 1990s has found its echo in the unprecedented decline in white working-class male life expectancy in the US. ..."
"... Perhaps the greatest lesson of the period after the last Cold War is that in the end, a stable and healthy polity and economy must be based on some minimal moral values. ..."
"... Those analysing the connection between Russia and Trump's administration have looked in the wrong place. The explanation of Trump's success is not that Putin somehow mesmerised American voters in 2016. It is that populations abandoned by their elites are liable to extreme political responses; and that societies whose economic elites have turned ethics into a joke should not be surprised if their political leaders too become scoundrels. ..."
Sep 21, 2020 | prospectmagazine.co.uk

A s the US prepares to plunge into a new cold war with China in which its chances do not look good, it's an appropriate time to examine how we went so badly wrong after "victory" in the last Cold War. Looking back 30 years from the grim perspective of 2020, it is a challenge even for those who were adults at the time to remember just how triumphant the west appeared in the wake of the collapse of Soviet communism and the break-up of the USSR itself.

Today, of the rich fruits promised by that great victory, only wretched fragments remain. The much-vaunted "peace dividend," savings from military spending, was squandered. The opportunity to use the resources freed up to spread prosperity and deal with urgent social problems was wasted, and -- even worse -- the US military budget is today higher than ever. Attempts to mitigate the apocalyptic threat of climate change have fallen far short of what the scientific consensus deems to be urgently necessary. The chance to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and stabilise the Middle East was thrown away even before 9/11 and the disastrous US response. The lauded "new world order" of international harmony and co-operation -- heralded by the elder George Bush after the first Gulf War -- is a tragic joke. Britain's European dream has been destroyed, and geopolitical stability on the European continent has been lost due chiefly to new and mostly unnecessary tension with Moscow. The one previously solid-seeming achievement, the democratisation of Eastern Europe, is looking questionable, as Poland and Hungary (see Samira Shackle, p20) sink into semi-authoritarian nationalism.

Russia after the Cold War was a shambles and today it remains a weak economy with a limited role on the world stage, concerned mainly with retaining some of its traditional areas of influence. China is a vastly more formidable competitor. If the US (and the UK, if as usual we tag along) approach the relationship with Beijing with anything like the combination of arrogance, ignorance, greed, criminality, bigotry, hypocrisy and incompetence with which western elites managed the period after the Cold War, then we risk losing the competition and endangering the world.

One of the most malign effects of western victory in 1989-91 was to drown out or marginalise criticism of what was already a deeply flawed western social and economic model. In the competition with the USSR, it was above all the visible superiority of the western model that eventually destroyed Soviet communism from within. Today, the superiority of the western model to the Chinese model is not nearly so evident to most of the world's population; and it is on successful western domestic reform that victory in the competition with China will depend.

Hubris

Western triumph and western failure were deeply intertwined. The very completeness of the western victory both obscured its nature and legitimised all the western policies of the day, including ones that had nothing to do with the victory over the USSR, and some that proved utterly disastrous.

As Alexander Zevin has written of the house journal of Anglo-American elites, the revolutions in Eastern Europe "turbocharged the neoliberal dynamic at the Economist , and seemed to stamp it with an almost providential seal." In retrospect, the magazine's 1990s covers have a tragicomic appearance, reflecting a degree of faith in the rightness and righteousness of neoliberal capitalism more appropriate to a religious cult.

These beliefs interacted to produce a dominant atmosphere of "there is no alternative," which made it impossible and often in effect forbidden to conduct a proper public debate on the merits of the big western presumptions, policies or plans of the era. As a German official told me when I expressed some doubt about the wisdom of rapid EU enlargement, "In my ministry we are not even allowed to think about that."

This was a sentiment I encountered again and again (if not often so frankly expressed) in western establishment institutions in that era: in economic journals if it was suggested that rapid privatisation in the former USSR would lead to massive corruption, social resentment and political reaction; in security circles, if anyone dared to question the logic of Nato expansion; and almost anywhere if it was pointed out that the looting of former Soviet republics was being assiduously encouraged and profited from by western banks, and regarded with benign indifference by western governments.

The atmosphere of the time is (nowadays notoriously) summed up in Francis Fukuyama's The End of History , which essentially predicted that western liberal capitalist democracy would now be the only valid and successful economic and political model for all time. In fact, what victory in the Cold War ended was not history but the study of history by western elites.

"The US claiming the right of unilateral intervention anywhere in the world was an ambition greater than that of any previous power"

A curious feature of 1990s capitalist utopian thought was that it misunderstood the essential nature of capitalism, as revealed by its real (as opposed to faith-based) history. One is tempted to say that Fukuyama should have paid more attention to Karl Marx and a famous passage in The Communist Manifesto :

"The bourgeoisie [ie capitalism] cannot exist without constantly revolutionising the instruments of production, and thereby the relations of production, and with them the whole relations of society All fixed, fast-frozen relations with their train of ancient and venerable prejudices and opinions, are swept away; all new-formed ones become antiquated before they can ossify the bourgeoisie has through its exploitation of the world market drawn from under the feet of industry the national ground on which it stood. All old established national industries have been destroyed or are daily being destroyed "

Then again, Marx himself made exactly the same mistake in his portrayal of a permanent socialist utopia after the overthrow of capitalism. The point is that utopias, being perfect, are unchanging, whereas continuous and radical change, driven by technological development, is at the heart of capitalism -- and, according to Marx, of the whole course of human history. Of course, those who believed in a permanently successful US "Goldilocks economy" -- not too hot, and not too cold -- also managed to forget 300 years of periodic capitalist economic crises.

Though much mocked at the time, Fukuyama's vision came to dominate western thinking. This was summed up in the universally employed but absurd phrases "Getting to Denmark" (as if Russia and China were ever going to resemble Denmark) and "The path to democracy and the free market" (my italics), which became the mantra of the new and lucrative academic-bureaucratic field of "transitionology." Absurd, because the merest glance at modern history reveals multiple different "paths" to -- and away from -- democracy and capitalism, not to mention myriad routes that have veered towards one at the same time as swerving away from the other.

Accompanying this overwhelmingly dominant political and economic ideology was an American geopolitical vision equally grandiose in ambition and equally blind to the lessons of history. This was summed up in the memorandum on "Defence Planning Guidance 1994-1999," drawn up in April 1992 for the Bush Senior administration by Under-Secretary of Defence Paul Wolfowitz and Lewis "Scooter" Libby, and subsequently leaked to the media. Its central message was:

"The US must show the leadership necessary to establish and protect a new order that holds the promise of convincing potential competitors that they need not aspire to a greater role or pursue a more aggressive posture to protect their legitimate interests We must maintain the mechanism for deterring potential competitors from even aspiring to a larger regional or global role "

By claiming for the US the right of unilateral intervention anywhere in the world and denying other major powers a greater role in their regions, this strategy essentially extended the Monroe Doctrine (which effectively defined the "western hemisphere" as the US sphere of influence) to the entire planet: an ambition greater than that of any previous power. The British Empire at its height knew that it could never intervene unilaterally on the continent of Europe or in Central America. The most megalomaniac of European rulers understood that other great powers with influence in their own areas of the world would always exist.

While that 1992 Washington paper spoke of the "legitimate interests" of other states, it clearly implied that it would be Washington that would define what interests were legitimate, and how they could be pursued. And once again, though never formally adopted, this "doctrine" became in effect the standard operating procedure of subsequent administrations. In the early 2000s, when its influence reached its most dangerous height, military and security elites would couch it in the terms of "full spectrum dominance." As the younger President Bush declared in his State of the Union address in January 2002, which put the US on the road to the invasion of Iraq: "By the grace of God, America won the Cold War A world once divided into two armed camps now recognises one sole and pre-eminent power, the United States of America."

Nemesis

Triumphalism led US policymakers, and their transatlantic followers, to forget one cardinal truth about geopolitical and military power: that in the end it is not global and absolute, but local and relative. It is the amount of force or influence a state wants to bring to bear in a particular place and on a -particular issue, relative to the power that a rival state is willing and able to bring to bear. The truth of this has been shown repeatedly over the past generation. For all America's overwhelming superiority on paper, it has turned out that many countries have greater strength than the US in particular places: Russia in Georgia and Ukraine, Russia and Iran in Syria, China in the South China Sea, and even Pakistan in southern Afghanistan.

American over-confidence, accepted by many Europeans and many Britons especially, left the US in a severely weakened condition to conduct what should have been clear as far back as the 1990s to be the great competition of the future -- that between Washington and Beijing.

On the one hand, American moves to extend Nato to the Baltics and then (abortively) on to Ukraine and Georgia, and to abolish Russian influence and destroy Russian allies in the Middle East, inevitably produced a fierce and largely successful Russian nationalist reaction. Within Russia, the US threat to its national interests helped to consolidate and legitimise Putin's control. Internationally, it ensured that Russia would swallow its deep-seated fears of China and become a valuable partner of Beijing.

On the other hand, the benign and neglectful way in which Washington regarded the rise of China in the generation after the Cold War (for example, the blithe decision to allow China to join the World Trade Organisation) was also rooted in ideological arrogance. Western triumphalism meant that most of the US elites were convinced that as a result of economic growth, the Chinese Communist state would either democratise or be overthrown; and that China would eventually have to adopt the western version of economics or fail economically. This was coupled with the belief that good relations with China could be predicated on China accepting a so-called "rules-based" international order in which the US set the rules while also being free to break them whenever it wished; something that nobody with the slightest knowledge of Chinese history should
have believed.

Throughout, the US establishment discourse (Democrat as much as Republican) has sought to legitimise American global hegemony by invoking the promotion of liberal democracy. At the same time, the supposedly intrinsic connection between economic change, democracy and peace was rationalised by cheerleaders such as the New York Times 's indefatigable Thomas Friedman, who advanced the (always absurd, and now flatly and repeatedly falsified) "Golden Arches theory of Conflict Prevention." This vulgarised version of Democratic Peace Theory pointed out that two countries with McDonald's franchises had never been to war. The humble and greasy American burger was turned into a world-historical symbol of the buoyant modern middle classes with too much to lose to countenance war.

Various equally hollow theories postulated cast-iron connections between free markets and guaranteed property rights on the one hand, and universal political rights and freedoms on the other, despite the fact that even within the west, much of political history can be characterised as the fraught and complex brokering of accommodations between these two sets of things.

And indeed, since the 1990s democracy has not advanced in the world as a whole, and belief in the US promotion of democracy has been discredited by US patronage of the authoritarian and semi-authoritarian regimes in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, India and elsewhere. Of the predominantly Middle Eastern and South Asian students whom I teach at Georgetown University in Qatar, not one -- even among the liberals -- believes that the US is sincerely committed to spreading democracy; and, given their own regions' recent history, there is absolutely no reason why they should believe this.

The one great triumph of democratisation coupled with free market reform was -- or appeared to be -- in the former communist states of Central and Eastern Europe, and this success was endlessly cited as the model for political and economic reform across the globe.

But the portrayal of East European reform in the west failed to recognise the central role of local nationalism. Once again, to talk of this at the time was to find oneself in effect excluded from polite society, because to do so called into question the self-evident superiority and universal appeal of liberal reform. The overwhelming belief of western establishments was that nationalism was a superstition that was fast losing its hold on people who, given the choice, could everywhere be relied on to act like rational consumers, rather than citizens rooted in one particular land.

The more excitable technocrats imagined that nation state itself (except the US of course) was destined to wither away. This was also the picture reflected back to western observers and analysts by liberal reformers across the region, who whether or not they were genuinely convinced of this, knew what their western sponsors wanted to hear. Western economic and cultural hegemony produced a sort of mirror game, a copulation of illusions in which local informants provided false images to the west, which then reflected them back to the east, and so on.

Always the nation

Yet one did not have to travel far outside the centres of Eastern European cities to find large parts of populations outraged by the moral and cultural changes ordained by the EU, the collapse of social services, and the (western-indulged) seizure of public property by former communist elites. So why did Eastern Europeans swallow the whole western liberal package of the time? They did so precisely because of their nationalism, which persuaded them that if they did not pay the cultural and economic price of entry into the EU and Nato, they would sooner or later fall back under the dreaded hegemony of Moscow. For them, unwanted reform was the price that the nation had to pay for US protection. Not surprisingly, once membership of these institutions was secured, a powerful populist and nationalist backlash set in.

Western blindness to the power of nationalism has had several bad consequences for western policy, and the cohesion of "the west." In Eastern Europe, it would in time lead to the politically almost insane decision of the EU to try to order the local peoples, with their deeply-rooted ethnic nationalism and bitter memories of outside dictation, to accept large numbers of Muslim refugees. The backlash then became conjoined with the populist reactions in Western Europe, which led to Brexit and the sharp decline of centrist parties across the EU.

More widely, this blindness to the power of nationalism led the US grossly to underestimate the power of nationalist sentiment in Russia, China and Iran, and contributed to the US attempt to use "democratisation" as a means to overthrow their regimes. All that this has succeeded in doing is to help the regimes concerned turn nationalist sentiment against local liberals, by accusing them of being US stooges.

"A stable and healthy polity and economy must be based on some minimal moral values"

Russian liberals in the 1990s were mostly not really US agents as such, but the collapse of Communism led some to a blind adulation of everything western and to identify unconditionally with US policies. In terms of public image, this made them look like western lackeys; in terms of policy, it led to the adoption of the economic "shock therapy" policies advocated by the west. Combined with monstrous corruption and the horribly disruptive collapse of the Soviet single market, this had a shattering effect on Russian industry and the living standards of ordinary Russians.

Many liberals gave the impression of complete indifference to the resulting immiseration of the Russian population in these years. At a meeting of the Carnegie Endowment in Washington that I attended later, former Prime Minister Yegor Gaidar boasted to an applauding US audience of how he had destroyed the Russian military industrial complex. The fact that this also destroyed the livelihoods of tens of millions of Russians and Ukrainians was not mentioned.

This attitude was fed by contempt on the part of the educated classes of Moscow and St Petersburg for ordinary Russians, who were dubbed Homo Sovieticus and treated as an inferior species whose loathsome culture was preventing the liberal elites from taking their rightful place among the "civilised" nations of the west. This frame of mind was reminiscent of the traditional attitude of white elites in Latin America towards the Indio and Mestizo majorities in their countries.

I vividly remember one Russian liberal journalist state his desire to fire machine guns into crowds of elderly Russians who joined Communist demonstrations to protest about the collapse of their pensions. The response of the western journalists present was that this was perhaps a little bit excessive, but to be excused since the basic sentiment was correct.

The Russian liberals of the 1990s were crazy to reveal this contempt to the people whose votes they needed to win. So too was Hillary Clinton, with her disdain for the "basket of deplorables" in the 2016 election, much of the Remain camp in the years leading up to Brexit, and indeed the European elites in the way they rammed through the Maastricht Treaty and the euro in the 1990s.

If the post-Cold War world order was a form of US imperialism, it now looks like an empire in which rot in the over-extended periphery has spread to the core. The economic and social patterns of 1990s Russia and Ukraine have come back to haunt the west, though so far thank God in milder form. The massive looting of Russian state property and the systematic evasion of taxes by Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs was only possible with the help of western banks, which transferred the proceeds to the west and the Caribbean. This crime was euphemised in the western discourse (naturally including the Economist ) as "capital flight."

Peter Mandelson qualified his famous remark that the Blair government was "intensely relaxed about people becoming filthy rich" with the words "as long as they pay their taxes." The whole point, however, about the filthy Russian, Ukrainian, Nigerian, Pakistani and other money that flowed to and through London was not just that so much of it was stolen, but that it was escaping taxation, thereby harming the populations at home twice over. The infamous euphemism "light-touch regulation" was in effect a charter
for this.

In a bitter form of poetic justice, however, "light-touch regulation" paved the way for the 2008 economic crisis in the west itself, and western economic elites too (especially in the US) would also seize this opportunity to move their money into tax havens. This has done serious damage to state revenues, and to the fundamental faith of ordinary people in the west that the rich are truly subject to the same laws as them.

The indifference of Russian elites to the suffering of the Russian population has found a milder echo in the neglect of former industrial regions across Britain, Western Europe and the US that did so much to produce the votes for Brexit, for Trump and for populist nationalist parties in Europe. The catastrophic plunge in Russian male life expectancy in the 1990s has found its echo in the unprecedented decline in white working-class male life expectancy in the US.

Perhaps the greatest lesson of the period after the last Cold War is that in the end, a stable and healthy polity and economy must be based on some minimal moral values. To say this to western economists, businessmen and financial journalists in the 1990s was to receive the kindly contempt usually accorded to religious cranks. The only value recognised was shareholder value, a currency in which the crimes of the Russian oligarchs could be excused because their stolen companies had "added value." Any concern about duty to the Russian people as a whole, or the fact that tolerance of these crimes would make it grotesque to demand honesty of policemen or civil servants, were dismissed as irrelevant sentimentality.

Bringing it all back home

We in the west are living with the consequences of a generation of such attitudes. Western financial elites have mostly not engaged in outright illegality; but then again, they usually haven't needed to, since governments have made it easy for them to abide by the letter of the law while tearing its spirit to pieces. We are belatedly recognising that, as Franklin Foer wrote in the Atlantic last year: "New York, Los Angeles and Miami have joined London as the world's most desired destinations for laundered money. This boom has enriched the American elites who have enabled it -- and it has degraded the nation's political and social mores in the process. While everyone else was heralding an emergent globalist world that would take on the best values of America, [Richard] Palmer [a former CIA station chief in Moscow] had glimpsed the dire risk of the opposite: that the values of the kleptocrats would become America's own. This grim vision is now nearing fruition."

Those analysing the connection between Russia and Trump's administration have looked in the wrong place. The explanation of Trump's success is not that Putin somehow mesmerised American voters in 2016. It is that populations abandoned by their elites are liable to extreme political responses; and that societies whose economic elites have turned ethics into a joke should not be surprised if their political leaders too become scoundrels.

About this author Anatol Lieven Anatol Lieven is a professor at Georgetown University in Qatar and the author among other books of America Right or Wrong: An Anatomy of American Nationalism and (with John Hulsman), Ethical Realism: A Vision for America's Role in the World More by this author More by Anatol Lieven Will Qatar be reduced to a Saudi client state? July 18, 2017 Why the left needs nationalism January 3, 2017 Pakistan has survived -- now can it prosper?

[Sep 21, 2020] Stephen F. Cohen- The Ukrainian Crisis - It s not All Putin s Fault

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... There is no chance of mending relations and even less of achieving some security partnership between US and Russia. The rift will only keep on widening as US political and financial elites are growing increasingly desperate (and thus even more aggressive) while Russia abandons its attempts to please the haters and moves its focus on to its future prospective partners who have genuine interest in cooperating with Russia and achieving common goals.... including opposing the common enemy if you like! Well at least I hope so: the only reason why US wish to get closer to Russia would be to stab it in the back... one more time! ..."
Sep 21, 2020 | www.youtube.com

Gerry Cooney , 3 years ago (edited)

Speaking as an Independent, I say that our country, the USA, has engineered past confilcts and wars in order to feed the military industrial complex. Not so much that it results in a nuke-shooting war, but in a regular non-nuke shooting war. The solution? Send the sons and daughters of the politicians into direct combat, every time they approve another war. That should keep things a bit more peaceful.

Playthell Benjamin , 3 years ago

Professor Cohen is this nation's most objective and therefore most valuable thinker on Russia! The charge that his views are "not patriotic" is a compliment rather than the insult they intended. A scholar's views are only valuable to the public and, more importantly, policy makers, if they are OBJECTIVE!!! Which is to say that he follows the FACTS wherever they lead!

Stratus Blue , 4 years ago

Any "discussion" with no mention of the supranational central bank cartel is intentional deceptive omission. The "brass ring" is forced use of petro-dollars. The central bank stock holders and bankers loaning all dollars into existence as national debt, do not care who owns land. They care who pays off national debts and interest on debt. Civil war is their racket. There are no sovereign nations. No genuine nations that create their medium of exchange publicly. No national people. Just participants in an extortion or its victims. The "Elite" collect on money they created as loans in their central banking accounts. All others are only human numbers assigned billing addresses.

Maria Schick , 4 years ago

Welcome to the New World Order ....where Multinational corporations rule & their profits are what are most important..... NOT nation states it's the 99.9% against the .01% and they use MSM propaganda & fear to control the DUMB masses thinking

Madaleine , 9 months ago

Global mafia in the background! Shut down funding cia ET Al

keepinitreal , 2 years ago

So infuriating that videos that carry the truth have 57k views, while nasty lying propaganda has millions!

SJ R , 4 years ago

I just discovered John Batchelor Show on which Cohen has a guest spot- I just was drawn to this man's thinking, probably because I had made up my mind about Russia during the Ukraine crises. Seeing the US has ruin every country we have gone into- I'm on Russia's side, especially where Russia and Ukraine has a history, on that side of the world.

Santos D , 4 years ago (edited)

38:49 - Apologies for the somewhat Utopian question here. I agree with everything Cohen has said, but regarding cause of jihadist terrorism ( ie implosion of the economies in the region), does it make sense to discuss primarily this game of terrorist whack a mole (bombing, invading and crushing Jihadist insurgencies)? Is there any point in talking about a pro active policy of recreating sustainable, stable economies in the region? What would that even look like?

Cezanne Monet , 11 hours ago

Brilliant scholar. RIP Prof Cohen. Watch if you want to understand today's geopolitical situation. The whole situation.

No Names , 4 years ago (edited)

Not very many average Americans would be able to easily access and watch this. Average Americans still consume mainly mainstream media. Too bad, because this lecture would have opened their eyes and have blown up their brain-contaminated minds by the CNN, the New York Times and alike.

Chris Bowers , 4 years ago

I agree wholeheartedly Loane. Have always been extremely impressed with and appreciative of Cohen's carefully & thoughtfully considered contribution. We in the US have gone a bit off the deep end when it comes to this deeply embedded belief in exceptionalism and superiority, and have been extremely rude to much of the rest of the world in the process. It amazes me how patient Russia has been with us, waiting for us to come around to a more sober understanding of the world we live in today. I have to conclude that what we are experiencing here in the US is a perennial phenomenon that comes with the end of all empires throughout history, the mission creep of over-extending resources and the big one, seemingly blind hubris.

M Ch , 4 years ago

There is no chance of mending relations and even less of achieving some security partnership between US and Russia. The rift will only keep on widening as US political and financial elites are growing increasingly desperate (and thus even more aggressive) while Russia abandons its attempts to please the haters and moves its focus on to its future prospective partners who have genuine interest in cooperating with Russia and achieving common goals.... including opposing the common enemy if you like! Well at least I hope so: the only reason why US wish to get closer to Russia would be to stab it in the back... one more time!

Raf Zam , 3 years ago (edited)

NATO'S reason to exist ended when the Warsaw Pact was demolished. It was created to confront the socialist Warsaw Pact but today ALL of the members of the pact are part of NATO, except Russia. So why is it still operating? Who are they confronting? They are a bunch of bureaucrats looking for a reason to stay employed in an organization that lost its excuse to be. However, their behavior has gone from increasing security to actually becoming a menace to trigger a nuclear war to destroy life on earth.

Donald Watts , 4 years ago

It will take a Republican President to turn our relationships with hostile nations around. For some irrational reasoning, the current administration refuses negotiation with it's enemies. Somehow this is going to create understanding. and a less dangerous world. I don't see a continuation of this Administrations policy anything but reckless . I am assuming this policy has been one determined through Clinton, and will remain so. Clinton has said on a number of occasions, it is the Obama Administration's policies that will be hers as well. As an ex cold warrior, who has spent a lot of time chasing Soviet boomers in the North Atlantic, I am not willing to gamble my children and grand children's lives . It is a dangerous and ego driven pissing match. Let us start talking , This administration and families can climb into their luxury nuclear bomb proof bunkers...... My family and most Americans don't have that luxury.

William Carr , 3 years ago

Dr. Cohen, so Putin gave the Northern Alliance to the USA after 911 to bludgeon Afghanistan for hiding Bin Laden? Paul Craig Robert, David Ray Griffin and a growing list of Americans believe 911 was a total bamboozle. If that is true which it looks increasingly like it was, does that mean Putin was playing along with the our Reichstag fire? What does that make Putin? NATO should have been totally remade after 1986, but it wasn't and we simply missed a huge opportunity not for worldwide U.S. hegemony, but for a new umbrella of security by super powers in alliance. Obviously, the proliferation of ethno-religious groups was in Putin's mind when he welcomed us into Afghanistan, but damn it man, tell people EXACTLY why we and the Russians want to be in the Golden Crescent besides the extraction of minerals.

[Sep 21, 2020] Stephen Cohen at the AJC 2017 Forum, about Russia and Terrorism

Highly recommended!
This was a really bright mind
Julia Ioffe is a joke -- she is essentially a typical "national security parasite" and of the level that surprisingly, is lower that Max Boor, although previously I thought this is impossible. Julia Ioffe is very typical of the anti-Russian thinking in the West.
Jun 23, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Stephen Cohen at the American Jewish Committee Forum 2017, about Russia and Terrorism. Full debate

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r0rtr...


alo1, 3 years ago

And again, Cohen smashed these government employers singlehandedly.

Drew Hunkins, 3 years ago

This incessant Russophobia constantly being trumpeted by the Washington militarist imperialists must stop. It's putting the world on the brink of nuclear war.

Stephen Cohen's a godsend along with a handful of the other intellectuals out there speaking and writing the truth that penetrates the miasma of disinformation, half-truths and exaggerations emanating from the state-corporate nexus in the American mass media.

Cohen, along with John Pilger, James Petras, Robert Parry, Michael Parenti, John Pilger, Eva Bartlett, Diana Johnstone and Paul Craig Roberts must be read widely in order for folks to get a grasp of where the Washington imperialist ruling class is driving the world.

mitrovdan, 3 years ago

at 25:40 he just destroys her totally. what a point he made, amazing!! "thank you professor" the guy on the left wants to end Cohen's carnage of the so called experts. Cohen made minced meat out of em. Fact after fact...stonewalled em both. Listen to her, ISIS doesn't have nuke's, she obviously doesn't have a clue.

MrWebster, 3 years ago

Cohen is always cogent and convincing. One area I wish some historian would look into is how "Russia-gate" is not echoing Cold War themes, but echoing themes from the German Nazis in particular their belief about a great Jewish conspiracy against Europe.

Even Putin recently remarked on all these accusations: "It reminds me of anti-Semitism, A dumb man who can't do anything would blame the Jews for everything." Look at how Putin is drawn and pictured on major outlets. The NYTimes blamed resistance to TPP on Putin.

The Russians like the Jews are behind every social problem. Popular culture shows and speaks of Russia in the same way Nazi propagandists wrote about Russia.

Undermining Western liberal democracies, Jews were compared to spiders catching people in the webs. Same with Putin. Pick up Hitler's speech after the invasion of the Soviet Union justifying it., Echos? Accidental rhetoric of conspiracies ?

DSCdaP, 3 years ago

"to look past a long list of transgressions and abuses..." this is what I absolutely hate about America, they are all so stupid and ignorant to their own countries misdeeds it is unbelievable, infuriating beyond belief. The US is currently fighting 7 wars simultaneously, which it all started itself under false pretences and hid the real reason beneath a thick layer of BS propaganda and misinformation.

The secession of Crimea is the least egregious event of the entire conflicts history. The EU and US have pumped billions of dollars into the coup which took place weeks before the Crimean referendum, on the 20th of February 2014, 2 weeks prior to that, an intercepted phone conversation between Victoria Nuland (Assistant Secretary of State of the United States to Europe) and Geoffrey Pyatt (US Ambassador to the Ukraine) was leaked on February 4th, 2014. In this phone conversation, they describe key positions within the Ukrainian government being filled by Klitshko and Yatz... fast forward a few weeks, who do we see? Klitsh and Yatz! It was the most obvious sponsored coup in history.

Putin snatched the Crimean peninsula from NATO, who wanted to seize Russias military harbour in Sevastopol (which the Russians have used to supply Syria, this was one and a half years before they entered the conflict directly, apart from being a very important strategic harbour in general), by suggesting a referendum to the local government and they accepted.

Why? Because they were ethnic Russians and knew who gained power in Kiev, the neo-Nazi, Bandera-worshipping OUN, which the US has nourished, supported and developed for the last 100 years within the Ukrainian territory. These Nazis hate Russians, they have a deep seeded hatred of all things Russian which has been indoctrinated and drilled into them by the CIA for decades, the first thing they did after seizing power was to demote the Russian language from the official list of languages of the Ukraine.

They have since honoured Ukrainian Nazi-collaborators from WWII by erecting statues, renaming streets, creating new holidays etc. This is just one example of US misinformation and propaganda, nothing they say accurately describes the truth, nothing, not one thing has it's bases in reality. Be it about Libya, Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, and what have you, it's all lies and propaganda to mask their intentions.

North Korea is another example. North Korea is a hornets nest they kick once in a while to scare the Japanese and South Koreans into tolerating US occupation longer. Everything North Korea does is a direct response to threats and intimidations by the US. They staged a drill off the coast of North Korea which they called "Decapitation" for F's sake.

They have ratcheted up the tension again these past few months to sneak in their THAAD weapons stations, before the new President was chosen. And these THAAD systems have absolutely nothing to do with North Korea, it's against China and Russia, North Korea is a pretext.

The still active war, which has merely been under a seize fire for decades, against North Korea, could have been ended before there was colour television, but the US needs North Korea to exist in order to justify their occupation of S.Korea and Japan.

MrRondonmon , 1 day ago

And by the way, the CrowdStrike guy testified in 2017 that there was ZERO PROOF that the Russians hacked the DNC, but Schiff hid that for 2 years until John Ratcliff threatened to declassify it, then Schiff's sorry ass released the interviews. So, this man was 100 percent right, there is ZERO PROOF the Russians or anyone hacked the DNC. Its a damned lie, and it was always a lie.

Patty Rogers , 3 years ago

As usual, the journalists and leftist have nothing to offer- no facts, no forensic evidence, no truth. Only speculation hyperbole and hysteria. I don't believe Russia are the good guys but give me a break in all this crap!

beija flor , 2 years ago (edited)

why did cohen tell everyone even potential 'terrorists' that there is too much of exactly what 'terrorists' wish to get their hands on in the former soviet states?!!? if he is 'so afraid' of 'terrorism...' WHY did he say THAT?!!? not very bright... or perhaps he is FOS. idk?! wth?! SMH. maybe e is trying to inform people who r not 'terrorists,' so that people know n can figure out how to address the issues...?

Yet, for any terrorists who wanted to know how to get materials he spoke of, now they may know a region where they could potentially go to attain the materials... maybe in 'terrorists' circles they all know this already? it just seems concerning, is all...

Beth Lemmon, 2 years ago (edited)

Love Stephen Cohen, he is spot on and right about most if not all points, he's fair, wicked smart and sober minded. However he isn't right about POTUS Trump. If anyone has been watching this type of discourse about world geopolitics it looks like the NWO wants wars to depopulate the earth, set up a OWG and a utopia. It's so blatantly obvious to those who are honest and not ideologically possessed.

They recruit their stupid Antifa army and zombie possessed minions to do their dirty work in the streets. They want send our amazing military to do the fighting wars that are just to feed the MIC, and does nothing for America's good.

[Sep 21, 2020] Stephen Cohen Has Died. Remember His Urgent Warnings Against The New Cold War by Caitlin Johnstone

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God
"... In a world that is increasingly confusing and awash with propaganda, Cohen's death is a blow to humanity's desperate quest for clarity and understanding. ..."
Sep 19, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

Stephen F Cohen, the renowned American scholar on Russia and leading authority on US-Russian relations, has died of lung cancer at the age of 81.

As one of the precious few western voices of sanity on the subject of Russia while everyone else has been frantically flushing their brains down the toilet, this is a real loss. I myself have cited Cohen's expert analysis many times in my own work, and his perspective has played a formative role in my understanding of what's really going on with the monolithic cross-partisan manufacturing of consent for increased western aggressions against Moscow.

In a world that is increasingly confusing and awash with propaganda, Cohen's death is a blow to humanity's desperate quest for clarity and understanding.

I don't know how long Cohen had cancer. I don't know how long he was aware that he might not have much time left on this earth. What I do know is he spent much of his energy in his final years urgently trying to warn the world about the rapidly escalating danger of nuclear war, which in our strange new reality he saw as in many ways completely unprecedented.

The last of the many books Cohen authored was 2019's War with Russia? , detailing his ideas on how the complex multi-front nature of the post-2016 cold war escalations against Moscow combines with Russiagate and other factors to make it in some ways more dangerous even than the most dangerous point of the previous cold war.

"You know it's easy to joke about this, except that we're at maybe the most dangerous moment in US-Russian relations in my lifetime, and maybe ever," Cohen told The Young Turks in 2017. "And the reason is that we're in a new cold war, by whatever name. We have three cold war fronts that are fraught with the possibility of hot war, in the Baltic region where NATO is carrying out an unprecedented military buildup on Russia's border, in Ukraine where there is a civil and proxy war between Russia and the west, and of course in Syria, where Russian aircraft and American warplanes are flying in the same territory. Anything could happen."

Cohen repeatedly points to the most likely cause of a future nuclear war: not one that is planned but one which erupts in tense, complex situations where "anything could happen" in the chaos and confusion as a result of misfire, miscommunication or technical malfunction, as nearly happened many times during the last cold war.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/kqQbK_6meM8?feature=oembed

"I think this is the most dangerous moment in American-Russian relations, at least since the Cuban missile crisis," Cohen told Democracy Now in 2017. "And arguably, it's more dangerous, because it's more complex. Therefore, we -- and then, meanwhile, we have in Washington these -- and, in my judgment, factless accusations that Trump has somehow been compromised by the Kremlin. So, at this worst moment in American-Russian relations, we have an American president who's being politically crippled by the worst imaginable -- it's unprecedented. Let's stop and think. No American president has ever been accused, essentially, of treason. This is what we're talking about here, or that his associates have committed treason."

"Imagine, for example, John Kennedy during the Cuban missile crisis," Cohen added. "Imagine if Kennedy had been accused of being a secret Soviet Kremlin agent. He would have been crippled. And the only way he could have proved he wasn't was to have launched a war against the Soviet Union. And at that time, the option was nuclear war."

"A recurring theme of my recently published book War with Russia? is that the new Cold War is more dangerous, more fraught with hot war, than the one we survived," Cohen wrote last year . "Histories of the 40-year US-Soviet Cold War tell us that both sides came to understand their mutual responsibility for the conflict, a recognition that created political space for the constant peace-keeping negotiations, including nuclear arms control agreements, often known as détente. But as I also chronicle in the book, today's American Cold Warriors blame only Russia, specifically 'Putin's Russia,' leaving no room or incentive for rethinking any US policy toward post-Soviet Russia since 1991."

"Finally, there continues to be no effective, organized American opposition to the new Cold War," Cohen added. "This too is a major theme of my book and another reason why this Cold War is more dangerous than was its predecessor. In the 1970s and 1980s, advocates of détente were well-organized, well-funded, and well-represented, from grassroots politics and universities to think tanks, mainstream media, Congress, the State Department, and even the White House. Today there is no such opposition anywhere."

"A major factor is, of course, 'Russiagate'," Cohen continued. "As evidenced in the sources I cite above, much of the extreme American Cold War advocacy we witness today is a mindless response to President Trump's pledge to find ways to 'cooperate with Russia' and to the still-unproven allegations generated by it. Certainly, the Democratic Party is not an opposition party in regard to the new Cold War."

"Détente with Russia has always been a fiercely opposed, crisis-ridden policy pursuit, but one manifestly in the interests of the United States and the world," Cohen wrote in another essay last year. "No American president can achieve it without substantial bipartisan support at home, which Trump manifestly lacks. What kind of catastrophe will it take -- in Ukraine, the Baltic region, Syria, or somewhere on Russia's electric grid -- to shock US Democrats and others out of what has been called, not unreasonably, their Trump Derangement Syndrome, particularly in the realm of American national security? Meanwhile, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists has recently reset its Doomsday Clock to two minutes before midnight."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/owbMRxC382A?feature=oembed

And now Stephen Cohen is dead, and that clock is inching ever closer to midnight. The Russiagate psyop that he predicted would pressure Trump to advance dangerous cold war escalations with no opposition from the supposed opposition party has indeed done exactly that with nary a peep of criticism from either partisan faction of the political/media class. Cohen has for years been correctly predicting this chilling scenario which now threatens the life of every organism on earth, even while his own life was nearing its end.

And now the complex cold war escalations he kept urgently warning us about have become even more complex with the addition of nuclear-armed China to the multiple fronts the US-centralized empire has been plate-spinning its brinkmanship upon, and it is clear from the ramping up of anti-China propaganda since last year that we are being prepped for those aggressions to continue to increase.

We should heed the dire warnings that Cohen spent his last breaths issuing. We should demand a walk-back of these insane imperialist aggressions which benefit nobody and call for détente with Russia and China. We should begin creating an opposition to this world-threatening flirtation with armageddon before it is too late. Every life on this planet may well depend on our doing so.

Stephen Cohen is dead, and we are marching toward the death of everything. God help us all.

medium.com

lay_arrow

novictim , 55 minutes ago

People are just now starting to realize that possible alternate path. But the Demoncrats in the USA must first be put down, politically euthanized, along with their neocon never-Trump Republican partners. And that cleaning up is on the way. Trump's second term will be the advancement of the USA-Russia initiative that is so long overdue.

PerilouseTimes , 48 minutes ago

Putin won't let western billionaires rape Russia's enormous natural resources and on top of that Putin is against child molesters, that is what this Russia bashing is all about.

awesomepic4u , 1 hour ago

Sad to hear this.

What a good man. It is a real shame that we dont have others to stand up to this crazy pr that is going on right now. Making peace with the world at this point is important. We dont need or want another war and i am sure that both Europe and Russia dont want it on their turf but it seems we keep sticking our finger in their eye. If there is another war it will be the last war. As Einstein said, after the 3rd World War we will be using sticks and stones to fight it.

Clint Liquor , 44 minutes ago

Cohen truly was an island of reason in a sea of insanity. Ironic that those panicked over climate change are unconcerned about the increasing threat of Nuclear War.

thunderchief , 41 minutes ago

One of the very few level headed people on Russia.

All thats left are anti Russia-phobic nut jobs.

Send in the clowns.

Stephen Cohen isn't around to call them what they are anymore.

Eastern Whale , 55 minutes ago

cooperate with Russia

Has the US ever cooperated with anyone?

fucking truth , 3 minutes ago

That is the crux. All or nothing.

Mustafa Kemal , 49 minutes ago

Ive read several of his books. They are essential, imo, if you want to understand modern russian history.

Normal , 1 hour ago

The bankers created the new CCP cold war.

evoila , 19 minutes ago

Max Boot is an effing idiot. Tucker wiped him clean too. It was an insult to Stephen to even put them on the same panel.

RIP Stephen.

Gary Sick is the equivalent to Stephen, except for Iran. He too is of an era of competence which is and will be missed as their voices are drowned out by neocon warmongers

thebigunit , 17 minutes ago

I heard Stephen Cohen a number of time in John Bachelor's podcasts.

He seemed very lucid and made a lot of sense.

He made it very clear that he thought the Democrat's "Trump - Russia collusion schtick" was a bunch of crap.

He didn't sound like a leftie, but I'm sure he never told me the stuff he discussed with his wife who was editor of the left wing "The Nation" magazine.

Boogity , 9 minutes ago

Cohen was a traditional old school anti-war Liberal. They're essentially extinct now with the exception of a few such as Tulsi Gabbard and Dennis Kucinich who have both been ostracized from the Democrat Party and the political system.

[Sep 20, 2020] "I'd Rather Have This Book Than The Atomic Bomb"

Sep 20, 2020 | www.theburningplatform.com

Ominous stuff indeed. For readers who wish to read further, please consult the full Politico piece from which we have excerpted the above highlighted passages. There is also a fascinating documentary on Sharp instructively titled " How to Start a Revolution ."

This is all interesting and disturbing, to say the least. In its own right it would suggest a compelling nexus point between the operations run against Trump and the Color Revolution playbook. But what does this have to do with our subject Norm Eisen? It just so happens that Eisen explicitly places himself in the tradition of Gene Sharp, acknowledging his book "The Playbook" as a kind of update to Sharp's seminal "Dictatorship to Democracy."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/bb8mGNWwv-Y

And there we have it, folks -- Norm Eisen, former Obama Ethics Czar, Ambassador to Czechoslovakia during the "Velvet Revolution," key counsel in impeachment effort against Trump, and participant in the ostensibly bi-partisan election war games predicting a contested election scenario unfavorable to Trump -- just happens to be a Color Revolution expert who literally wrote the modern "Playbook" in the explicitly acknowledged tradition of Color Revolution Godfather Gene Sharp's "From Dictatorship to Democracy."

Before we turn to the contents of Norm Eisen's Color Revolution manual, full title "The Democracy Playbook: Preventing and Reversing Democratic Backsliding," it will be useful to make a brief point regarding the term "democracy" itself, which happens to appear in the title of Gene Sharp's book "From Dictatorship to Democracy" as well.

Just like the term "peaceful protestor," which, as we pointed out in our George Kent essay is used as a term of craft in the Color Revolution context, so is the term "democracy" itself. The US Government launches Color Revolutions against foreign targets irrespective of whether they actually enjoy the support of the people or were elected democratically. In the case of Trump, whatever one says about him, he is perhaps the most "democratically" elected President in America's history. Indeed, in 2016 Trump ran against the coordinated opposition of the establishments of both parties, the military industrial complex, the corporate media, Hollywood, and really every single powerful institution in the country. He won, however, because he was able to garner sufficient support of the people -- his true and decisive power base as a "populist." Precisely because of the ultra democratic "populist" character of Trump's victory, the operatives attempting to undermine him have focused specifically on attacking the democratic legitimacy of his victory.

In this vein we ought to note that the term "democratic backsliding," as seen in the subtitle of Norm Eisen's book, and its opposite "democratic breakthrough" are also terms of art in the Color Revolution lexicon. We leave the full exploration of how the term "democratic" is used deceptively in the Color Revolution context (and in names of decidedly anti-democratic/populist institutions) as an exercise to the interested reader. Michael McFaul, another Color Revolution expert and key anti-Trump operative somewhat gives the game away in the following tweet in which the term "democratic breakthrough" makes an appearance as a better sounding alternative to "Color Revolution:"

Most likely as a response to Revolver News' first Color Revolution article on State Department official George Kent, former Ambassador McFaul issued the following tweet as a matter of damage control:

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-1&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1297593718363394048&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.theburningplatform.com%2F2020%2F09%2F20%2Fid-rather-have-this-book-than-the-atomic-bomb%2F&partner=tfwp&siteScreenName=burningplat&theme=light&widgetsVersion=219d021%3A1598982042171&width=550px

What on earth then might Color Revolution expert and Obama's former ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul, who has been a key player agitating for President Trump's impeachment, mean by "democratic breakthrough?"

Being a rather simple man from a simple background, McFaul perhaps gave too much of this answer away in the following explanation (now deleted).

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With this now-deleted tweet we get a clearer picture of the power bases that must be satisfied for a "democratic breakthrough" to occur -- and conveniently enough, not one of them is subject to direct democratic control. McFaul, Like Eisen, George Kent, and so many others, perfectly embodies Revolver's thesis regarding the Color Revolution being the same people running the same playbook. Indeed, like most of the star never-Trump impeachment witnesses, McFaul is or has been an ambassador to an Eastern European country. He has supported operations against Trump, including impeachment. And, like Norm Eisen, he has actually written a book on Color Revolutions (more on that later).

Norm Eisen's The Democracy Playbook: A Brief Overview:

A deep dive into Eisen's book would exceed the scope of this relatively brief exposé. It is nonetheless important for us to draw attention to key passages of Eisen's book to underscore how closely the "Playbook" corresponds to events unfolding right here at home. Indeed, it would not be an exaggeration to say that regime change professionals such as Eisen simply decided to run the same playbook against Trump that they have done countless times when foreign leaders are elected overseas that they don't like and want to remove via extra-democratic means -- "peaceful protests," "democratic breakthroughs" and such.

First, consider the following passage from Eisen's Playbook:

If you study this passage closely, you will find direct confirmation of our earlier point that "democracy" in the Color Revolution context is a term of art -- it refers to anything they like that keeps the national security bureaucrats in power. Anything they don't like, even if elected democratically, is considered "anti-democratic," or, put another way, "democratic backsliding." Eisen even acknowledges that this scourge of populism he's so worried about actually was ushered in with "popular support," under "relatively democratic and electoral processes." The problem is precisely that the people have had enough of the corrupt ruling class ignoring their needs. Accordingly, the people voted first for Brexit and then for Donald Trump -- terrifying expressions of populism which the broader Western power structure did everything in its capacity to prevent. Once they failed, they viewed these twin populist victories as a kind of political 9/11 to be prevented by any means necessary from recurring. Make no mistake, the Color Revolution has nothing to do with democracy in any meaningful sense and everything to do with the ruling class ensuring that the people will never have the power to meddle in their own elections again.

The passage above can be insightfully compared to the passage in Gene Sharp's book noting ripe applications to the domestic situation.

It is instructive to compare the passage in Eisen's Color Revolution book to the passage in Michael McFaul's Color Revolution book:

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First off, it is absolutely imperative to look at every single one of the conditions for a Color Revolution that McFaul identifies. It is simply impossible not to be overcome with the ominous parallels to our current situation. Specifically, however, note condition 1 which refers to having a target leader who is not fully authoritarian, but semi-autocratic. This coincides perfectly well with Eisen's concession that the populist leaders he's so concerned about might be "illiberal" but enjoy "popular support" and have come to power via "relatively democratic electoral processes."

Consulting the above passage from McFaul's book, we note that McFaul has been perhaps the most explicit about the conditions which facilitate a Color Revolution. We invite the reader to supply the contemporary analogue to each point as a kind of exercise.

    1. A semi-autocratic regime rather than fully autocratic
    2. An unpopular incumbent (note blanket negative coverage of Trump, fake polls)
    3. A united and organized opposition (media, intel community, Hollywood, community groups, etc)
    4. An ability to quickly drive home the point that voting results were falsified -- See our piece on the Transition Integrity Project
    5. Enough independent media to inform citizens of falsified vote (see full court press in media pushing contested election narrative, social media censorship)
    6. A political opposition capable of mobilizing tens of thousands or more demonstrators to protest electoral fraud ( SEE BLACK LIVES MATTER AND ANTIFA )

On point number four , which is especially relevant to our present situation, Eisen has an interesting thing to say about the role of a contested election scenario in the Orange Revolution, arguably the most important Color Revolution of them all.

Finally, let's look at one last passage from Norm Eisen's Color Revolution "Democracy Playbook" and cross-reference it with McFaul's conditions for a Color Revolution as well as the situation playing out right now before our very eyes:

A few things immediately jump out at us. First, the ominous instruction: "prepare to use electoral abuse evidence as the basis for reform advocacy." Secondly, we note the passage suggesting that opposition to a target leader might avail itself of "extreme institutional measures" including impeachment processes, votes of no confidence, and, of course, the good old-fashioned "protests, strikes, and boycotts" (all more or less peaceful no doubt).

By now the Color Revolution agenda against Trump should be as plain as day. Regime change professionals like McFaul, Eisen, George Kent, and others, who have refined their craft conducting color revolutions overseas, have taken it upon themselves to use the same tools, the same tactics -- quite literally, the same playbook -- to overthrow President Trump. Yet again, same people, same playbook.

We conclude this study of key Color Revolution figure Norm Eisen by exploring his particularly proactive -- indeed central role -- in effecting one of the Color Revolution's components mentioned in the Eisen Playbook -- impeachment.

__________

The Ghost of Democracy's Future

We mentioned at the outset of this piece that Norm Eisen is many things -- a former Obama Ethics Czar (but of course), Ambassador to Czechoslovakia, participant in the now notorious Transition Integrity Project, et cetera. But he earned his title as "legal hatchet man" of the Color Revolution for his tireless efforts in promoting the impeachment of President Trump.

The litany of Norm Eisen's legal activity cited at the beginning of this piece bears repeating.

As the man who implemented the David Brock blueprint for suing the President into paralysis and his allies into bankruptcy , who helped mainstream and amplify the Russia Hoax, who drafted 10 articles of impeachment for the Democrats a full month before President Trump ever called the Ukraine President in 2018 , who personally served as DNC co-counsel for litigating the Ukraine impeachment

If that resume doesn't warrant the title "legal hatchet man" we wonder what does? We encourage interested readers or journalists to explore those links for themselves. By way of conclusion, it simply suffices to note that much of Eisen's impeachment activity he conducted before there was any discussion or knowledge of President Trump's call to the Ukrainian President in 2018 -- indeed before the call even happened. Impeachment was very clearly a foregone conclusion -- a quite literal part of Norm Eisen's Color Revolution playbook -- and it was up to people like Eisen to find the pretext, any pretext.

Despite their constant invocation of "democracy" we ought to note that transferring the question of electoral outcomes to adversarial legal processes is in fact anti-Democratic -- in keeping with our observation that the Color Revolution playbook uses "democracy" as a term of art, often meaning the precise opposite of the usual meaning suggesting popular support.

Perhaps the most important entry in Eisen's entry is the first, that is, Eisen's participation in the infamous David Brock blueprint on how to undermine and overthrow the Trump presidency.

The Washington Free Beacon attended the retreat and obtained David Brock's private and confidential memorandum from the meeting. The memo, " Democracy Matters: Strategic Plan for Action ," outlines Brock's four-year agenda to attack Trump and Republicans using Media Matters, American Bridge, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) , and Shareblue.

The memo contains plans for defeating Trump through impeachment , expanding Media Matters' mission to combat " government misinformation ," ensuring Democratic control of the Senate in the 2018 midterm elections , filing lawsuits against the Trump administration, monetizing political advocacy , using a "digital attacker" to delegitimize Trump's presidency and damage Republicans, and partnering with Facebook to combat "fake news." [Washington Free Beacon]

This leaked memo was written before President Trump took office, further suggesting that all of the efforts to undermine Trump have not been good faith responses to his behavior, but a pre-ordained attack strategy designed to overturn the 2016 election by any means necessary. The Color Revolution expert who suggests impeachment as a tactic in his Color Revolution "playbook" was already in charge of impeachment before Trump even took office -- -Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) is run by none other than Norm Eisen.

But the attempt to overturn the 2016 election using Color Revolution tactics failed. And so now the plan is to overthrow Trump in 2020, hence Norm Eisen's noted participation in the Transition Integrity Project. Looking around us, one is forced to ask the deeply uncomfortable question, "transition into what?"

To conclude, we would like to call back to a point we raised in the first piece in our color revolution series. In this piece, we noted that star Never Trump impeachment witness George Kent just happens to be running the Belarus desk at the State Department. Belarus, we argued, with its mass demonstrations egged on by US Government backed NGOS, its supposed "peaceful protests" and of course its contested election results all fit the Color Revolution mold curiously enough.

One NGO called the Transatlantic Democracy Working Group (TDWG) was bold or reckless enough to draw the parallels between the Color Revolution in Belarus and the events playing out against Trump explicitly. In response to a remark by a twitter user that the TDWG's remarks about Belarus suggested parallels to the United States, the TDWG ominously replied:

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-2&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1292956044252131329&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.theburningplatform.com%2F2020%2F09%2F20%2Fid-rather-have-this-book-than-the-atomic-bomb%2F&partner=tfwp&siteScreenName=burningplat&theme=light&widgetsVersion=219d021%3A1598982042171&width=550px

Now, would the reader care to take a guess as to who runs the Transatlantic Democracy Working Group? If you guessed Norm Eisen, you would be correct.

Stay tuned for more in Revolver.news' groundbreaking coverage of the Color Revolution against Trump. Be sure to check out the previous installments in this series:

REVOLVER EXCLUSIVE -- The Curious Case of George Kent: State Department's Belarus "Color Revolution" Expert And "Never Trump" Impeachment Witness

REVOLVER EXCLUSIVE: Transition Integrity Project: Is this Soros Linked Group Plotting a "Color Revolution" Against President Trump?

*****************

The QT has referenced "the playbook" (uncapitalized) several times. Don't know if they are pointing to Eisen's book, or the "Nazi" playbook. Whichever one it is, probably both, the legitimate question can be asked:

3596
Q !!mG7VJxZNCI 11/15/2019 13:38:28 ID: 0a9027
Archive Bread/Post Links: 7354957 / 7355985
Direct Link: 7355985


What advantages might exist when you know the other sides playbook ?
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/trap
Enjoy the show!
Q

* Note what word is being defined in the dictionary link.

If interested in seeing what QT is referencing in regards to "the playbook" you can click this link , type " playbook " into the 'Search' and all mentions of 'playbook' in the drops will come up.

Examples:

Part of #4655

Part of #4650

Part of #4476


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[Sep 20, 2020] NGOs - Information Resource Center

Sep 20, 2020 | ircsofia.wordpress.com

Information Resource Center U.S. Embassy – Sofia, Bulgaria The Democracy Playbook: Preventing and Reversing Democratic Backsliding Posted on January 22, 2020

The Democracy Playbook: Preventing and Reversing Democratic Backsliding. Brookings Institution. Norman Eisen et al. November 2019

The Democracy Playbook sets forth strategies and actions that supporters of liberal democracy can implement to halt and reverse democratic backsliding and make democratic institutions work more effectively for citizens. The strategies are deeply rooted in the evidence: what the scholarship and practice of democracy teach us about what does and does not work. We hope that diverse groups and individuals will find the syntheses herein useful as they design catered, context-specific strategies for contesting and resisting the illiberal toolkit. This playbook is organized into two principal sections: one dealing with actions that domestic actors can take within democracies, including retrenching ones, and the second section addressing the role of international actors in supporting and empowering pro-democracy actors on the ground. [ Note: contains copyrighted material ].

[PDF format, 100 pages].

[Sep 20, 2020] NYT First Reinforces, Then Silently Debunks Its False Claims About Russia's Covid-19 Vaccine

Vaccine against coronaviruses is a very tricky business as the virus tend to mutate with time. Still it looks like Russian found some nw avenue to tackle this problem which might be more efficient then alternatives.
Notable quotes:
"... Science Magazine ..."
"... Science Magazine ..."
Sep 20, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Western reporters to not like to correct their own false reporting. They rather reinforce it as much as possible. Only when overwhelmed by the facts will they silently admit that they were wrong in the first place. Here is a prime example of how that's done.

In mid-August we exposed how 'western' media lied about the approval for phase-3 testing of the Russian Sputnik vaccine against Covid-19. They said that Russia claimed the vaccine was ready to go population wide. That never was the case.

'Western' Media Falsely Claim That Russia's Covid-19 Vaccine Is Ready To Go

Russia has not approved a vaccine against Covid-19 and it is not skipping large-scale clinical trials. The Russia regulator gave a preliminary approval for a vaccine candidate to start the large-scale clinical trial. [...]

Science Magazine is one of the few media who got it right : ...

One of the false reports we pointed out was by the New York Times Moscow correspondent Andrew E. Kramer:

Russia Approves Coronavirus Vaccine Before Completing Tests

Russia has become the first country in the world to approve a vaccine for the coronavirus, President Vladimir V. Putin announced on Tuesday, though global health authorities say the vaccine has yet to complete critical, late-stage clinical trials to determine its safety and effectiveness.
...
By skipping large-scale clinical trials, the Russian dash for a vaccine has raised widespread